A Challenge from John Piper in the New Year

“If our single, all-embracing passion is to make much of Christ in life and death, and if the life that magnifies him most is the life of costly love, then life is risk, and risk is right. To run from it is to waste your life.” — John Piper, Risk is Right

Comfort is an oftentimes acceptable and encouraged idol, even in the lives of Christians.

While it is true that Jesus’s yoke is easy and his burden is light (Matt. 11:30), that does not mean that we’ve been promised our best life now. No, this is a life in which we have been promised difficulty if we choose to follow Christ (Luke 6:22-23; John 16:33; James 1:2-4; 1 Peter 4:12-14). But this life is not without hope, and it is not without joy. Sometimes, we need a faithful brother or sister in Christ to remind us of the brevity and purpose of this life, calling us to something greater than the elusive American Dream. In Risk is Right, John Piper is that faithful brother.

If you’re stuck in a rut and can’t remember the last “courageous” thing you’ve done for Christ, or are in a season of life where everything seems uncertain, or just need a good kick-start to start living intentionally in 2013, Piper is writing to you:
“Are you caught in the enchantment of security, paralyzed from taking any risks for the cause of God? Or have you been freed by the power of the Holy Spirit from the mirage of. . . safety and comfort? Do you men ever say with Joab, 'For the sake of the name, I’ll try it! And may the Lord do what seems good to him'? Do you women ever say with Esther, 'For the sake of Christ, I’ll try it! And if I perish, I perish'? . . . .
"On the far side of every risk—even if it results in death—the love of God triumphs. This is the faith that frees us to risk for the cause of God. It is not heroism, or lust for adventure, or courageous self-reliance, or efforts to earn God’s favor. It is childlike faith in the triumph of God’s love—that on the other side of all our risks, for the sake of righteousness, God will still be holding us. We will be eternally satisfied in him. Nothing will have been wasted.”

 

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