Yesterday, as I drove by Moody High School, I saw the marching band practicing in the parking lot. The temperature outside my truck registered 109 degrees. And while I don’t think it was quite that hot, I am certain those students were standing on that sweltering hot parking lot when the temperature was well over 100 degrees. This got me thinking.
When I was in high school, I was always at football practice when the marching band was practicing. Consequently, I never saw or understood how hard they worked to perform at halftime. They did this week, after week, after week. I just assumed they showed up in their band uniforms every Friday night and everything fell into place.
I did not understand the commitment it took to be in high school band until my oldest daughter, Lindsey, was in band. That’s when I learned that band was all consuming. From long practices, to learning to march in formation, to Friday night football games, concerts, and competitions, I realized it was all or nothing. You could not be a part-time band member. It didn’t work that way.
It’s the same with being a follower of Jesus Christ. It’s all or nothing.
When Jesus says to one man, “Follow me,” the man says, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” Jesus responds by saying, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:59-60)
This sounds harsh until we understand that the man wasn’t saying his father was near death’s door and Jesus was not telling him to neglect his father. The man was not ready to wholeheartedly commit to following Jesus. He only wanted to be a follower when it was convenient, easy, and without true commitment. Jesus reminded him that’s not how it works.
To be a follower of Jesus is a fulltime commitment. There is no such thing as a part time Christian.
So if you haven’t fully made the choice and you are sitting on the fence, jump in with both feet. Give yourself completely to God and let the adventure of living a life of love and compassion begin. You will not regret it. All you have to do is commit.
Prayer: Dear Gracious Heavenly God, today, I give myself to you without reservation or hesitation. Help me fully embrace this wonderful life that you planned for me. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
Today is the beginning of the rest of your life. Make it count.
Also, if you are in a high school band, know I truly appreciate all the hard work you do to bring joy to others.
I pray your day is filled with joy and laughter.