Luke 19:26 (The Message) --- He said, 'That's what I mean: Risk your life and get more than you ever dreamed of. Play it safe and end up holding the bag.
That is a revealing verse to say the least. When people begin to risk their lives for Jesus, things change. Things change in that person's life, in the lives around then and in their circumstances. The same is true in the other direction. When we chose not to take risks, things change, and most likely, that person begins to miss some of the bet things that could happen.
So which person are you? Are you a risk taker or do you play it safe?
When God begins to work around us or in situations, people begin to get uncomfortable. That happens today and it even happened in Jesus' day.
Luke 20:19 (The Message) --- The religion scholars and high priests wanted to lynch him on the spot, but they were intimidated by public opinion. They knew the story was about them.
What must of been going through their heads? These were the people who lead the religious people, the church goes. But they were cut by what Jesus did and said. It was not comfortable. Jesus was rocking the proverbial boat. Public opinion was changing because man had made things about the law rather than about God. They cared more about what people thought than what God thought. Have that ever happened to you? I have to watch out for this. If you are honest, you do too.
Things are comfortable when Jesus is working. But how we respond to that discomfort shows what is happening in our lives, shows if we are willing to follow God even when we are not in control. I was recently studying through Luke and came across a verse that struck me, and then this week my family has been reading through Matthew and we came across a similar verse. These people chose to ask Jesus to leave rather than follow what God wanted
Matthew 8:34 (NLT) --- Then the entire town came out to meet Jesus, but they begged him to go away and leave them alone.
The entire town ... can you imagine? Go back and read the story of Matthew 8. Their lives were being changed. Go back and read history of revivals going through areas. The towns changed, homes and families changed. Bars closed. People got right with relationships. But what happens when people don't want to do what God says and what is right?
Luke 20:45-47 (The Message) --- With everybody listening, Jesus spoke to his disciples. "Watch out for the religion scholars. They love to walk around in academic gowns, preen in the radiance of public flattery, bask in prominent positions, sit at the head table at every church function. And all the time they are exploiting the weak and helpless. The longer their prayers, the worse they get. But they'll pay for it in the end."
Jesus warned us to watch out for people who want to look right and not do right. That warning may even be a ploy to get us to look in the mirror at ourselves. What are we doing with what God says? Are we avoiding time with God or reading the Bible because we are not willing to do what God says? Are we more concerned about what people think than what God thinks? Answer those questions honestly.
It takes risk to answer honest. It takes risk to make things right. But that risk will make life "more than you ever dreamed of". Or at least that is what God says.