Following in the footsteps of Jesus Christ is a real challenge! It is not always going to be a life spent in joy, good humor and great company. No! A life spent in the company of our Savior first and foremost will require a life deeply rooted and firmly built stone by stone upon a solid foundation. It will be a life in which one is willing to truly give up any or everything for which he or she might have wished or hoped. It will require a heart deeply engaged in a daily life which possesses an hourly keen awareness of Christ’s existence overall, but more so a deep abiding and humbling awareness of our Lord’s hourly presence in his or her daily life. None of this is easy. Nor can it ever be made easy. That at best is nothing but wishful thinking, wild dreams, false hopes and empty goals.
Rather, a life deeply embedded in, and constantly renewed and built upon a firm foundation of solid stone is a life that will ultimately require a heavy ransom, heavy burdens, sheer determination, perseverance and much suffering. Without such an extracted price, then, how can one reasonably expect to draw closer to our Lord? He went out into the public to preach the Good News, heal the wounded, teach, and in so doing to bring about hearts on fire and minds more keenly attuned to God’s presence. What can any man or woman ever hope to realistically achieve on their daily and lifelong spiritual journey without first experiencing their own burdensome suffering, crucifixions, rejections, poverty and possibly appearing to be nothing but a failure, a mere fool…all on behalf of that ancient teacher, known as our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ? Why waste your life on this so-called “pitch and toss” kind of life? In the eyes of far too many, maybe even a vast majority of modern people, you would only end up being a fool! And that can embarrass some, if not far too many people.
However, the Holy Spirit has already called you forth. He has entered into the very depths of your being. The spiritual wisdom of the Holy Spirit is that wisdom you know and strive to live out. Though real estate, stocks and technology all have an assessed or estimated value, the greatest investment you can ever reasonably hope to invest, obtain, give away, and from which you can nurture, live out and experience dividends is the life you can freely choose to spend one hour, one day at a time in the company of Christ. Which is worth more? An inspired and loving heart and a keen mind or, a multi-acre parcel of land located along a state highway? Which is worth more to you? Take a risk! Have courage. Trust in our Lord! Persevere! Know our Lord is always with you. This is an hour, a moment our Lord has freely granted unto you. What are you doing in return? Take this one gift of life and run with it! Be or become a modern disciple of Christ. Then, always seek to live your life in the company of our Lord Jesus Christ. Then be at peace with the world.
-Father Michael Briese