What if accepting Christ meant that you would serve Christ; without any continued blessings?
That you would exist simply to serve Him and others around you?
That you would tithe and sacrifice with no additional bonus, aside from obedience, connection and intimacy to God?
Would you still accept Him as Lord, and Savior? Would you still give your life to Him?
As my son has been preparing for Fine Arts, a talents competition that teaches kids to use their gifts for Christ; we have been talking a lot about these questions. It's easy for me to follow God because I do know that my life is blessed beyond words through Him. I also know that he pours out so much more than I could even begin to ask for in my life. I know that when I tithe, with a right attitude, that I am blessed abundantly through and through. My relationship with Christ has proven those things.
But the question isn't whether God will do those amazing things that are true to His nature. But whether, am I all in for the right reason. Do I serve Him so that I can get the benefits of being in a relationship with God? So that I can experience the "goodness" of God; or do I serve Him simply out of my love for Him, because He first loved me while I was still a sinner-apart from Him.
Selfishness is ingrained in the core of human nature. But to follow Christ, that nature must be killed. We cannot pursue God with an endless prayer list of our wants, needs, and desires; and still expect to really know the fullness of God. When I think about the prayers I pray are they prayers of self or are they prayers to get to know the very heart of God? I want my relationship with Him to be driven by who He is, rather than who I am. I can gauge my position on where I am at based on how I react when prayers are not answered the way I think they should be. And based on how I react when pain and trials touch my life, and God seems to let me walk through them, rather than rescue me out of them.
None of this is easy; and I am inclined to believe that it may take me my whole life to really live this out, well. But I desire to live for him; not just claim him so that I can make things better for me, or so that I can feel like I am safe from Hell. I intend to pursue Him, His heart, and to live for Him; not for myself.
Life is Beautiful!