When I first read the question for this morning I thought it asked, “What are you most tempted to put ahead of Jesus, to love more than Jesus.” Once I read this I fired off my answer quickly, “My accomplishments!” The next question asked why and so I answered again in a rapid ‘I got this one’ sort of fashion, “Because there is still something inside of me that hopes it will please God and get me more points with Jesus.” Then it asked, “what did you gain from this exercise.” which I at first left blank. As I contemplated my answer, that I was going to write down in a bit, my only thought was recognition that I want to follow Jesus. When the lunch portion of the journal asked me to think of the person you named this morning, I did not understand. I didn’t name a person this morning. That is when I looked the mornings question over again to see that it asked, “Who…”
There was a sinking feeling in my heart as I considered that answer. The obvious first answer was me, at least in my mind. The real answer as I consider it more is, “It depends on the day.” I reflected back on the last couple weeks and tried to figure out all of the people I had put before Jesus. There was the service writer that had to get a car done quickly. (For those who do not know I am pastoring part time now at Parker UMC, I have a job at a local car dealership as a mechanic.) Then there are all those other things people ask me to do, even though I don’t have time to get my other stuff done. How annoying is that? Have you had days like that?
My mind begins to think about how do I make Jesus number one in my life? It is easy to see that I get too busy helping others out. But wait a minute, if I have died and it is Christ living in me, then when I am helping someone out, isn’t it Christ serving through me? The lunch questions bottom line was for me to make a comparison. Compare the person that I am tempted to put ahead of Jesus with Jesus, there is no comparison. Even when I am answering the wrong question, the things that I put ahead of Jesus, had no comparison to Jesus. While my accomplishments have the potential of overshadowing Jesus or being put ahead of Jesus, it is because of Jesus I am motivated to do those accomplishments. My number one accomplishment is making it through another day seeking to move in the direction of Christ-likeness.
I pray my actions show that Jesus is what I am committed to.