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Trae Durden

Kicking and Screaming


“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:16

God’s abundant love for the whole world, specifically all the people in the world, is so great that He sacrificed Himself on a cross to pay the price of our sin. This bedrock truth of our Christian faith is a call to action, a militant passage for those who embrace Jesus as our Savior also to embrace the people of this world in love.

There is no exception, no compromise and no negotiation when it comes to our love for others. Because He has loved us so, we must love one another! It sounds good; it’s a great ideal; but all too often, those of us who follow Christ fall short of this vital expectation.

He calls us into ministry, but we resist. He invites us into His presence to worship, but we neglect the opportunities. He says follow Me, and we focus on so many other things in this life that grab our attention and our desire. He challenges us to grow, but we reject growth because we love comfort.

Kicking and screaming we go along, complaining about His way of life – comparing it to the standards of this world and forgetting the eternal implications.

Christian writer and apologist C.S. Lewis wrote, “We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”

We start kicking and screaming if our silly sensual pursuits are interrupted by spiritual obligation. Isn’t it time for you and me to restore God’s purpose in our lives?

Instead of kicking and screaming, rebelling against the One who loves us so, we must seek Him and His Kingdom first! Dreaming of His glory and delighting in His Word! There is infinite joy that awaits you in Christ. His masterpiece of your life isn’t complete until you humble yourself before Him. He’s calling us to open our minds to His will.

What change in perspective could redirect our minds into His presence once again? Instead of focusing on the sensual things that bring us trivial pleasure, focus again on Him and His love. He’s calling us to open our hearts to His way. Instead of following our hearts, let’s lead our hearts to Jesus. He wants us to open our hands to do His work. Through your influence, through your sacrifice, through your love for others – there are so many ways you can serve God. We must express our love through actions that lead to spiritual renewal and spiritual growth!

There’s no place for rebellion in the hearts of Christians. God has filled it with love for Him, love for others and a love to reach heaven: our eternal home.

God bless you all.

Trae Durden has been the preaching minister at North Highlands church of Christ in Russellville since January 2013. He is married to Leann Durden, and they have a daughter, Darcy Grace, 15, and a son, Dalton, 12.