What is a soul worth? Scripture says there is no greater love than to give one’s life for his friend. There is no greater love, because there is no greater price that can be paid. This is why we consider giving one’s life on the battlefield the ultimate sacrifice. This is the very price that was paid by Christ for our soul when he was crucified that day on Calvary. That debt can never be repaid; I spent a few years trying because I didn’t believe I was worth the price. Then I fully engaged with the belief that it was a free gift from God, and I had no obligation to pay anything, so I needn’t do anything. I believe both of these beliefs fall short of the truth.
When we come into a relationship where the cost is so high and the love for us is so great, the only adequate response is to respond in kind- with that same love, devotion, and sacrifice. By the very definition of a relationship it is reciprocal. Scripture call us to count the cost before entering that relationship: “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?” Luke 14:26-29
This passage makes me tremble. What am I willing to sacrifice? How far am I willing to go for my Christ? I go to church, tithe, teach students, go on missions around the world, and spend time in prayer and studying Scripture. By most definitions, I give generously to the Lord. But, this scripture calls us to give sacrificially, to willingly give up our families, our desires, and even our lives. According to Jim Elliot, a martyred missionary, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.” I have counted the cost and fervently hope that I have the strength to complete the calling Christ has placed on my life. I pray I am willing to part with the things that I hold most precious, my family and my life, to bring glory and honor to the Lord. That His name will be known and made famous across all the Earth.
This scripture stretches me to pursue God with every fiber of my being. It challenges me to lay aside my own ambition, comfort, and calendar. We are on the spiritual battlefield fighting for our King, and as his soldiers we are called to fight and sacrifice all in His name. It is time to act like it. It’s what I tell students each week, “If following Christ was easy, everyone would do it, and there would be no need for God.” Please join me in prayer and meditation on if the life we are living is worth the price that was paid?
Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it. Matthew 10:39