Really With A Question mark Printed On A Board

I Really REALLY Mean it this Time

I remember it like it was yesterday. I was a young child trying to convince someone what I wanted. I told them over and over again but this person didn’t believe me. “No. I really mean it this time.” Again, I tried to convince my opponent. “I really REALLY mean it.” It wasn’t until I was older that I understood the reason I wasn’t believed was that my actions didn’t reflect what I was saying.

I was reminded of this story when I read today’s Gospel lesson. The Jewish leaders so refused to believe Christ was God, that they insisted He keep telling them. No matter how many times He told them, even showed them with actions, they just couldn’t bring themselves to believe.

The Lord said to the Jews who came to him, “For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life, that I may take it again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again; this charge I have received from my Father.”  There was again a division among the Jews because of these words. Many of them said, “He has a demon, and he is mad; why listen to him?” Others said, “These are not the sayings of one who has a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?” It was the feast of the Dedication at Jerusalem; it was winter, and Jesus was walking in the temple, in the portico of Solomon. So the Jews gathered round him and said to him, “How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Christ, tell us plainly.” Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name, they bear witness to me; but you do not believe, because you do not belong to my sheep. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me; and I give them eternal life.”

John 10.17-28

We are no longer children. It is time for us to recognize our part in our failure to believe Christ. Be honest with yourself. Do you live according to how you say you believe, or how you actually believe? Christ came and told us exactly how He wanted us to live, and how He was going to judge us. Still, our actions many times are like we just don’t believe Him.

Christ commands us to love Him more than any other person or item in the world. Do we live that love, or do we love our possessions more than God? If you want to learn how to love God more than any other thing, learn to tithe to the Church. You can’t love stuff more than God when you’re giving the Church your wealth.

Do you want to love God more than you love yourself? Learn to fast as a reminder that God is more important than pleasing your stomach. If we want to love Christ as He commanded, then we must learn to love to live the Orthodox Faith.

Stop asking God to prove to you who He is. He has already told you, more than once. Maybe you’re waiting for Him to say to you, “I really REALLY mean it this time.” He just did.

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