Welcome to This Passing Day. Friend, may I ask you a question today? Is Christ looking for the kind of dedication that put all other interests in life on a lower priority? Even when it seems fair to opt out for a time and just be a person passing through life, are we to be drawn back into a fanatic commitment to serve Christ and his church 100%?
My friend, lifes a story, welcome to This Passing Day.
When I began driving and buying cars back in the 1960’s there were two kinds of people, MoPar men and those who weren’t MoPar men. MoPar is an acronym for Motor Parts Division. It was coined by the folks at Chrysler Corporation back in 1937 when they discovered that they were losing out on the lucrative replacement parts market for buyers of th
ir automobiles and trucks. It wasn’t long before owners of Chryslers, DeSotos, Dodges and Plymouths began to identify with the term as a way of differentiating themselves from the owners of all the other cars: Fords, Chevys, Nashes, Hudsons, Studebakers and the other car makes. Even though there were nearly a dozen other car manufacturers during the 1930’s and 1940’s, owners of Chrysler Corporation cars, fixated on identifying with their car brand, adopted the MoPar monicker and began separating automobile ownership into two groups: MoPar and all the others. Devoted to their car brand, these MoPar enthusiasts left no room for even considering another make of car. Their 1961 DeSoto may have been one of the ugliest cars every designed by Chrysler Corporation, but it was a DeSoto and not a Ford, Chevy or any other make of car; and that was all that mattered–because it was a MoPar.
Is this the kind of dedication that Christ is looking from us? Even when it seems fair to opt out for a time and just be a person passing through life on this earth, are we to be drawn back into the commitment to serve Christ and his church 100%?
Here’s a story. Bertoldo de Giovanni is a name even the most enthusiastic lover of art is unlikely to recognize. He was the pupil of Donatello, the greatest sculptor of his time, and he was the teacher of Michelangelo, the greatest sculptor of all time. Michelangelo was only 14 years old when he came to Bertoldo, but it was already obvious that he was enormously gifted. Bertoldo was wise enough to realize that gifted people are often tempted to coast rather than to grow, and therefore he kept trying to pressure his young prodigy to work seriously at his art. One day he came into the studio to find Michelangelo toying with a piece of sculpture far beneath his abilities. Bertoldo grabbed a hammer, stomped across the room, and smashed the work into tiny pieces, shouting this unforgettable message, “Michelangelo, talent is cheap; dedication is costly!” (Gary Inrig)
In Luke 14:26 Jesus states. “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters, -- yes, even his own life–he cannot be my disciple.” What is Jesus asking of us here? Is this crazy talk? No, he’s telling us that we need to be fanatics for the good news of the gospel. As children of God we are enormously gifted in Christ with the ability to tell others about salvation. We are, therefore, without excuse for our leisure. A true follower of Christ is like those MoPar men, this was no mere dedication to a credo, but a devotion to an idea that only MoPar was a worthwhile purchase. Similarly, there is no substitute for Jesus Christ. We need to pour ourselves into him. Credos are easy to follow, saviors are much more difficult. That requires devotion to carry a cross and disregard self.
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We pray. Thank you Lord for giving each of us who believe the ability to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ through our commitment to Jesus. Forgive us Father when we waver and busy ourselves with words of commitment without the service of discipleship and devotion to our Savior. Take our lives Lord and dedicate them to the Good News of Jesus Christ. May nothing every stand between us and him. In Jesus name we pray. Amen!
Therefore my friend, Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry for itself; each day has enough trouble of its own. This Passing Day. (Matt 6:34)
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