Single-Mindedness (Bonhoeffer-part 3)

 

Single-minded people can drive you up the proverbial wall!  They only care about one thing; only talk about one thing; and only listen to one thing; and if you are not beating the same drumbeat, they do not have any time for you.  Single-mindedness can be zeroed in on any interest, hobby, goal, or whatever.

As Jesus was out calling disciples to himself, what did he expect of them and want to grow in them?  Nothing less than single-mindedness.  Not to a cause, not to a philosophy, not to a way of life; but, simply devoted and obedient to him.  In chapter three of The Cost of Discipleship, Bonhoeffer sums the discipleship calls to the rich young ruler (Matthew 19:16-22), Simon Peter (Mark 1:17), Levi/Matthew (Mark 2:14), and others (Luke 9:57-62) as one of single-minded obedience.  But how do you become so single-minded as Jesus requires?  Bonhoeffer answers, “Only one thing is required in each case-to rely on Christ’s word and to cling to it as offering greater security than all the securities in the world.”

For the follower of Jesus, the word of Christ is trusted to the degree so as to remove trust in whatever else that existed before meeting Christ.  That Word and calling from Christ interrupts one’s previous obedience to the calling of the world.  This happens as the Word of Christ dwells and permeates the believer so as to reveal the weakness of the world and to magnify the power of Christ in him through that Word.  Single-minded obedience is not so much the forcefulness of the intensity of the follower, but rather should be ascribed to the power of Christ’s Word.  Followers cling by faith, but it is the Word that is driving a person to single-mindedness.  As followers of Jesus, let us not think so much of ourselves, but rather let us think more highly esteem the word of Christ.  He does the work in us through His Word as we simply cling to it.

How much time do you take to not only read the Scriptures that proclaim the glories of the Messiah Jesus, but to so meditate and allow the Word of Christ to work upon your beliefs, desires, and allegiances?  How is this Word throwing out the old and bringing in the new?  The Word of Christ will work and perform in you what Christ requires of you as you hold to it for your life-Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.  And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. (Col 3:16-17 ESV).

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