Luke 14:26-28a – Anyone who wants to be my follower must love me far more than he does his own father, mother, wife, children, brothers, or sisters — yes, more than his own life — otherwise he cannot be my disciple. And no one can be my disciple who does not carry his own cross and follow me. But don't begin until you count the cost. (TLB)
Well, it's charge card season again! I shudder when I remember some of my previous Christmas bills. Perhaps I was trying to buy affection. For whatever reason, I gave too many presents, too often.
January is too late to count the cost of December giving. We would all do well to count that cost, not just in money, but also in relationship damage and greed.
There is another kind of cost, too. It is the cost of being a disciple. Jesus makes the rules very clear. He must be first.
Luke 14:33 – Simply put, if you're not willing to take what is dearest to you, whether plans or people, and kiss it goodbye, you can't be my disciple. (MSG)
Luke 14:33 – So no one can become my disciple unless he first sits down and counts his blessings — and then renounces them all for me. (TLB)
Prayer: Lord, we may think that we are all we have, but we make a conscious choice today to spend ourselves on You alone. We choose Your presence over any present. In Jesus' name. Amen.