Considering again our question: “Would I serve Jesus and follow Him if there were NO benefit to me?”
Jesus points out that we if we are not following Him, then whomever or whatever we are following is already of NO benefit! Are we following fame, wealth, vengeance, social status…? Or perhaps you say, “I’m not following anyone or anything; I make my own way.” Well, OK just add “self-will” to the list. It too is of NO benefit. All of these may be filling our suitcase, but as mentioned yesterday the luggage must stay behind.
Someone once coined about society’s “rat race”: “Even if you win you’re still a rat!” and for us, whatever we seek we seek as still mortals. Ever since sin entered this world we immortals, have become mere mortals. “It is appointed to each of us a day when we will die.” (Heb. 9:27). It will make no difference then what we have chased, what we have caught, or what eluded us. As Job observed, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart” (Job 1:21), or as Solomon summarized, “…all come from dust, and to dust all return” (Eccl. 3:20). No luggage allowed.
Jesus’ question is as relevant today as it was at the dawn of humanity: “What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?” (Mark 8:36). We can spend our life “climbing the ladder of success” – only to find that all the while it was leaning against the wrong wall!
So in yet a third sense now we come to that question: “Would I serve Jesus and follow Him if there were NO benefit to me?” It seems now that there is no other logical action to take than to embrace Him… whatever the cost, whatever may befall.
Joyfully casting all luggage aside, we run to Him. We grab that ladder that rests on nothing here but which drops from above, leaving all behind as it pulls us upward, not from our home, but to it. For all along this is that for which we were intended. Jesus has gone ahead, prepared for us a place and has said, “I am the way” (John 14:26), “follow me” and we, broken and humbled, will do so!