What Will You Do With Jesus?
What Will You Do With Jesus?
“Jesus. It’s all about You. What will I do with Jesus?” These are the words that have been going through my mind all week, whether I was running errands, getting ready for a Christmas party, preparing for our Christmas Eve service, or even just cleaning our messy kitchen. “Jesus. What will I do with Jesus … this week … next week … next year?”
As I’ve considered this question, God captured my attention with a compelling story from Lee Strobel’s life. Educated with a degree in journalism and a Yale Law degree, he began his career as an investigative journalist quickly earning recognition and eventually various awards as the legal editor of The Chicago Tribune and today has become a New York Times best-selling author of more than twenty books. His resume is impressive but his professional and personal life changed drastically in the early eighties.
Years ago, as a confirmed atheist, he would sometimes find himself confronted with the question of the true identity of Jesus. Deciding to put the question to rest once and for all, he began a journey to disprove the existence of a Creator and to prove that the resurrection of Jesus was nothing more than a legend developed by misguided people. Armed with his investigative journalism skills and legal expertise, he spent two years doing extensive research and interviewing prominent scientists from around the world. At the end of this time, he arrived at an astonishing conclusion.
He writes: “In light of the convincing facts I had learned, the great irony was this: it would require much more faith for me to maintain my atheism than to trust in Jesus of Nazareth! The atheism I had embraced for so long buckled under the weight of historical truth. It was a stunning and radical outcome, certainly not what I had anticipated … But it was, in my opinion, a decision compelled by the facts.”
As he sat in his study surrounded by his extensive research, he thought, “Well … so what? If all this is true, what difference does it make?” He began to make a list of the obvious implications. Here a few of his thoughts:
- “If Jesus did rise from the dead, he’s still alive today and available for me to encounter on a personal basis.”
- “If Jesus conquered death, he can open the door of eternal life for me too.”
- “If Jesus has divine power, he has the supernatural ability to guide me and transform me as I follow him.”
- “If Jesus loves me as he says, he has my best interests at heart. That means I have nothing to lose and everything to gain by committing myself to him and his purposes.”
At this moment, he found himself face to face with the same question that had been going through my mind all week: “Jesus. What will I do with Jesus?”
He thought of a verse he had encountered during his investigation: Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God. (John 1:12). Sitting in his study, confronted with facts, Lee made a choice to believe and entered into a personal relationship with Jesus.
I’m overwhelmed and awed by the power of God to shine the light of His truth into the darkness of Lee Strobel’s unbelief. I’m also humbled by the heart of God who pursues us with His relentless love and speaks to us in the ways that matter to us … even at those times when we’re running in the opposite direction.
I love the description of faith God provides in Hebrews: Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. (Hebrews 11:1)
What would happen if we placed ALL of our faith and confidence in Jesus? How would our lives be different … this Christmas … next week … next year? Would we worry less? Would we love more? Would our lives be changed?
And that leads me to my favorite part of Lee Strobel’s story:
Only a few short months after becoming a follower of Jesus, his 5 year-old daughter who had only known her father as angry, verbally harsh, and all too often absent, said to her mom, “Mommy, I want God to do for me what he did for Daddy.”
Don’t you love the fact that this little girl came to faith in Jesus not as the result of years of extensive research but by the power of seeing a transformed life. Her daddy was different … radically transformed … radiating Jesus’ love … and she wanted that for herself.
What will you do with Jesus … today … and every day?