fetterIf we imagine living a life of complete, unhindered pursuit of God, many different images come to mind. We think of taking greater risks, positing less weight on other’s opinions, participating in daily uninterrupted communion with God and His Word, and giving more freely of ourselves.

Yet we don’t live that way. Why not? What are those things that keep us from following hard after God, with abandon?

We saw how Jesus targeted a few such fetters (Luke 9:57-62)…self-inflicted restraints that tie us down to something less than full discipleship. Something less than full LIFE. Something less than, in Jesus’ words, suitable for the Kingdom of God.

We pursue this foreign, twisted, partial discipleship as soon as we say, almost always unconsciously, “I’ll follow you Jesus, but…”
“I’ll follow You, but I won’t move.”
“I’ll follow You, but don’t infringe on my time. Or possessions. Or…”

What are our “buts?”

Jesus confronted directly the fetters of comfort, concern of social status, the past, our own timings, and cultural expectations. We also saw how good things, without proper spiritual discernment and discretion, have the ability to actually draw us away from God…things even like family responsibilities/obligations and other good works and ministries.

The Bible calls these fetters, these “buts,” idols. Ouch.

This is hard stuff, especially practically. To consciously rid ourselves of those things that hold us back hurts. Sacrifices hurt. Yet this is part of our call. And true deep life is not found elsewhere. Do we REALLY want to live? Do we REALLY desire God?

Jesus tells us it’s all or nothing. Now, not later. Leave it and follow.

Thankfully, God has given us the power for these sacrifices through the Holy Spirit. And we have each other.

What are you learning as you take steps to more fully pursue God? How are you succeeding and where are you struggling?