Tuesday, March 29, 2011

When People Meet Jesus

I was once about 10 feet away from Mateen Cleaves and Morris Peterson, who had recently helped Michigan State win a National Championship. Never heard of them? That’s ok, it’s college basketball.From 1999.

I got to meet the members of DC Talk backstage after a concert. Never heard of them? That hurts a little, since they are a favorite band of mine that is no longer together, but I understand.

Then there was this time I was in the same room as Mel Gibson. He was speaking about this new movie he had made. It was about some guy named Jesus. Wait, you’ve heard of him? Or do you mean Him?

Ah, Jesus. You may have heard of Mel Gibson as well, but if you’re like me, being in the same room did not change my life much...or at all. Neither did meeting DC Talk or seeing some basketball players.

But the same cannot be said for those who met Jesus.

People who met Jesus never forgot the experience. If they were blind, they went away with sight. If they were deaf, then all of the sudden they could hear. The crippled were able to run and the lame were made cool.

Ok, I may have made up that last one. But when people met Jesus, they left changed. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t always for the better. Those who seemed to be wise left confused. Some who had good plans walked away frustrated. For those who did not trust or could not believe, they simply walked away.

All were changed by their meeting with Jesus.

Have you been changed? Or did your life just kind of keep going as it had always gone. I believe that's what happened when I first said I was giving my life to Jesus. But that's because I only said I was giving my life. I didn't actually give my life. That would come with time.

I believe that it is impossible for a life not to be changed if we give it to Jesus. It's not because He will instantly make us a missionary to some third-world country or have us join a traveling troupe of singers, like Wiggles for Jesus. I have to believe Jesus would strike that group down with laryngitis before they even got on their tour bus. But that's besides the point.

I believe our lives change because our focus changes. Whereas all of our prior decisions were made based on what we wanted, now our decisions are made based on what Jesus wants. It's the difference between living selfishly and living selflessly.

So what does your life look like? Does it reflect Jesus? If it doesn't, let me ask a pointed question. Have you really met Jesus? I said earlier that people who meet Jesus never forgot the experience. More succinctly, people who met Jesus lived every other experience in connection to meeting Jesus. It changed everything.

Everything.

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