Simple But Not Easy!

Written by: Pastor Josh Powell

Have you ever heard the saying “simple but not easy”?  It means something is not complex or complicated to accomplish; however, it may be difficult or challenging to perform.  For example, waking up on time without an alarm, admitting you were wrong, staying on a budget, or remembering all the lists at the grocery store.  All those things are fairly “simple but not easy.”  Do you want to know my favorite example?  It’s Jesus’ invitation to “follow me.”

If you have watched The Chosen series or have been following along with our message series “The Chosen,” then you have seen this simple but not easy invitation extended to Matthew (played by Paras Patel on The Chosen).  It’s an incredible moment in history, when Jesus looks at Matthew, who is the neighborhood tax collector, scripture describes the encounter:

“As Jesus went on from there, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax collector’s booth. “Follow me,” he told him” – Matthew 9:9a

There was no other instruction.  Just follow.  Once Matthew heard those words, he responded;

“Matthew got up and followed him” – Matthew 9:9b

That’s our example.  The boldness it takes to get up and follow.  Matthew left his excellent paying job, his comfortable house, his wealth, his lifestyle, Matthew left his glamorous former life to follow Jesus.  When we decide to follow Jesus, do we do the same thing?  Maybe not leave our jobs or sell our house, but do we love Jesus more than anything else?  Do we keep our eyes on Jesus on the midst of trials?  Is our main focus Jesus?

When I felt the call to ministry, I fought with this idea.  Leaving a good-paying job, selling the house we had lived in for over a decade, possibilities of moving my family from the only town they’d ever known, and so much more.  However, when I heard those words (no audibly) “follow me,” we denied ourselves (set aside our wants and desires) and have taken up our cross daily.  The invitation is simple, to follow Jesus. When we decided to pursue full-time ministry, we made hard decisions.  Some of the most complex decisions were the simplest to make.  Deciding to move, sell our house, leave the business world after 13 years, and so many others.  All those “hard” decisions were the simplest.  We “got up and followed him.”  It’s not too late for you to do the same.  

When we put our faith in Jesus, we are made new (2 Corinthians 5:17).
When we put our faith in Jesus, we find life in abundance (John 10:10).
When we put our faith in Jesus, we are set free (John 8:36).
When we put our faith in Jesus, we are promised eternity in Heaven (John 3:16-17).

What are some ways you can follow Jesus this week?  What are some things you’ve been carrying around that you feel are holding you back from fully following Jesus?  This week, take steps towards Jesus because he’s taken the steps towards you.  

How can we be praying for you?

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