"If anyone wishes to follow Me...."

   I read a story about a man who was an elder in a house church in China.  One night while he was sleeping he was awakened by the Lord.  The Spirit told him to gather up the fruits and meat that the house church had stored up to care for people in need.  The Holy Spirit told this elder to take the load of food by horse and sled, to a pastor’s family who had been left to die in a one room hut in the frozen tundra.

   The elder reminded the Spirit that it was thirty degrees below zero outside and that there was no way that he could survive the trip.  The man reminded God that the wolves would probably eat his horse and then eat him.

   Then the words of the Holy Spirit rang in his ears:  “You do not have to come back; you simply have to go.”

   As I read that I was certainly taken back.  There is no need to question the man’s sanity or argue the merits or validity of this story.  The truth is, this is the actual call to everyone who would call themselves a born again Christian.  “If anyone wishes to follow after Me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow Me.”  This is Jesus’ call to all disciples.  There is no calling ourselves saved if we won’t follow. 

   A. W. Tozer said of this statement, “When a man went to take up his cross, he wasn’t coming home to supper ever again.” 

I don’t wonder about my commitment or yours.  I know that I must chose this moment, and each moment, to obey Jesus Christ… not to worry about getting back from anywhere He sends.