By MIKE TRAYLOR
Did the title grab you? I am not writing about the movie with this title but about an attraction that is fatal. This attraction is so fatal that it will cost you your life. What is this attraction? Well, it is the attraction of Jesus. The attraction of Jesus will cost you!
If you are a Christ follower I have a question for you. What attracted you to Jesus? Was it the love of God? Was it the forgiveness of God? Could it have been the grace of God? Was it hope, faith, or something else? The question of what attracts you to Jesus is an important question, because your answer is what might attract others to Jesus as well.
Two attributes of Jesus that are very attractive are found in John 1:17 (AMP), “For the law was given through Moses, grace (unearned, undeserved favor and spiritual blessing) and truth came through Jesus Christ.”
Grace and truth are attractive. While truth is attractive, I receive truth when I know I have grace (unearned, undeserved favor and spiritual blessing) from God, put simply if I know God favors me I might accept some hard truths.
The attraction of Jesus gives me a fatal truth that I heard from my Pastor this week based on this verse from Matthew. “Then Jesus said to His disciples, If anyone desires to be My disciple, let him deny himself (disregard, lose sight of, and forget himself and his own interests) and take up his cross and follow Me (cleave steadfastly to Me, conform wholly to My example in living and, if need be, in dying, also). For whoever is bent on saving his (temporal) life (his comfort and security here) shall lose it (eternal life); and whoever loses his life (his comfort and security here) for My sake shall find it (life everlasting)” (Matthew 16:24-25, AMP).
The amplified (AMP) version of the Bible hits home with me because honestly I am very committed to my own comfort and security. My Pastor this week called it the sin of selfishness. The fatal truth is that I must die to my own comfort and security to experience life everlasting. What a fatal attraction!
So how can we as Christ followers die to our own comfort and security and experience life everlasting? In counseling, we are always looking for assessments, tests, and tools to help clients. I have been reading Philip Yancey’s new book, Vanishing Grace, and found a very practical tool to die to my own comfort and security and allow the attractiveness of grace and truth to be displayed in my life. Here it is:
- Love one another.
- Forgive one another.
- Pray for one another.
- Bear one another’s burdens.
- Be devoted one to another.
- Regard one another as more important than yourself.
- Do not speak against one another.
- Do not judge one another.
- Show tolerance for one another.
- Be kind to one another.
- Speak truth to one another.
- Build up one another.
- Comfort one another.
- Care for one another.
- Stimulate one another to love and good deeds.
Following these “one another’s” will keep me busy for a while and hopefully move me past my own comfort and security, so that those actions might display a fatal attraction to others.
Mike Traylor is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and can be reached at Summit Counseling at 601.949.1949.