Choosing God or Ourselves: A Short Challenging Thought


Image by Naoki Tai

One thought resounded in my mind this morning. From where the words came, I do not know. But they repeated over and over in my mind.

“I would rather die a pauper in the service of Christ, than as a rich man in service of myself.”

As these words flowed through my mind and heart, almost subconsciously saying these words like a mantra—I stopped.

Do I really believe this? Is it about me or about Christ? Is it about my comfort, collection of stuff, wealth, and ease of life? Or is it about the glory of Christ and his work being done—even if it means at the expense of the life that each person desires innately?

I am becoming more and more convinced that few really want their lives to be about Christ. Perhaps we grew up in a Christian context in which Christianity was just another identity label, like being American and a Republican (that certainly was the case for me).

But Christ wants and demands that we have his identity permeate every corner of our lives. Every character trait, thought, action, motive, and desire. He wants us all.

Do I want him or just myself?


THEOLOGY21 is a co-op of authors dedicated to renovating theology for a new generation, taking the ancient truths of scripture and theology and speaking to the post-Christian culture of the 21st century. To keep up-to-date on all things THEOLOGY21, Give our Facebook page a “like”, follow our twitter page, add yourself to our email list, or subscribe to our feed!

  • Good thoughts, Jonathan.  I think this issue is a problem particularly with American Christianity where we think that the “pursuit of happiness” is part of the abundant life.  I don’t think God has a problem with our happiness or material wealth, but it is not His ultimate goal. His desires to be reconciled to Creation, to redeem us for what He created us for. 

  • Well said @popparables:disqus ! So true. He gives some wealth and some poverty—but neither are an indication of his love for them. He wants those with stuff to care for those who don’t. And I am convinced that he is sitting up there watching and rooting for me to give to that hungry guy on the corner. 

Please support the site
By clicking any of these buttons you help our site to get better
Social PopUP by SumoMe