“Whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple” (Luke 14:33).

TO FOLLOW JESUS IN THIS LIFE, WE MAY HAVE TO FORSAKE SOME THINGS, BUT TO FOLLOW HIM ALL THE WAY TO HEAVEN, WE’LL HAVE TO FORSAKE EVERYTHING. Nothing is ours to keep. There is nothing — nothing — we won’t have to let go of, except God.

Most people would say the rich, wonderful love that can exist between a husband and a wife is the highest of the temporal blessings available to us. In the midst of enjoying a good marriage, most people would say, “It doesn’t get any better than this.” But without denigrating the joys of marriage, it must be said that marriage is earthly. It won’t be in heaven. It must be let go of.

I want to share with you one of the starkest statements that I have ever come across, considering who made it. This is James Dobson talking, the man who, for many folks, is the foremost family authority in America: “Nothing is really important in [this] life, not even the relationships that blossom in a healthy home. In time, we must release our grip on everything we hold dear.” I suggest that if James Dobson, a man who has devoted his life to the importance of the home, sees that marriage and family life are not “really important,” the rest of us had better sit up and take notice.

Most of us, I suppose, would say that we love the Lord more than anything else and that heaven is going to be better than anything we have here. But do you really believe that? Do you love God more than you love your spouse? Would you give up marriage for the Lord? Is the spiritual life better than sex? If the Lord gave you a choice between going to heaven right now and staying in the world with your grandchildren for ten more years, which would you choose? Now certainly, we may enjoy these things right now and then have the Lord in heaven later on. But even now, the Lord had better be more important to us than these things. And the main measure of whether we have a proper attitude toward temporal joys is how ready we are to let go of them. And I don’t mean “someday” — I mean today, if the need should arise.

What it comes down to is this: anything we can’t let go of is an idol that will destroy our souls, however good that thing may be.

“Learn to hold loosely all that is not eternal” (Agnes Maude Royden).

Gary Henry – WordPoints.com

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