I discovered a great scandal today. I found out that I who have so often burned with passion to make disciples of others am merely a tepid lover of Christ myself. I realised that although I have been touched by God’s love and have decided irrevocably to follow Him come what may, my heart is still more attracted to the empty idols my false self craves than to Jesus Christ crucified.
I am the worst kind of Christian – one who accepts the love of Jesus but whose response is both ‘yes’ and ‘no’. I decide to follow Christ but I am loathe to surrender my life completely to Him. “Let’s go slower” I tell him. “I’ll give such and such up instead of what you’re asking of me.” My following of Christ is full of equivocation. How can that be termed discipleship?!
So often I easily perceive lukewarmness in another Christian and I feel frustrated at that person’s tepidity. But Christ says to me, “You are that person! The same lack of total abandonment and responsiveness you see in the other person you have also in you. What have I not given you? What more do I need to give you in order for you to give yourself wholly and immediately to me?”
It is folly to claim that I desire to surrender my will to God and yet find excuses to stay within my comfort zone. I stand convicted. I am guilty. I am a tepid lover.
(I am grateful for this realisation for it has put me in my place. Time to renew and reinvigorate my commitment to discipleship!)