This morning, as I was writing in my journal, I found it hard to write the phrase "whatever the cost" in regards to following Christ. It was hard because I know Christian history, and I know the many lives that have ended in martyrdom and insignificance for their commitment to Christ. I also think about the cost to my family. What could my decision to follow Christ do to my family?
When I was a young Christian it was very popular for people to ask, "Are you willing to die for Jesus?" in an attempt to determine if you were "radically" committed to Christ. Those who had to think about it or were unsure were obviously not committed enough.
But Jesus didn't walk up to Peter, the first time, and say, "Are you willing to be crucified upside down for me?" No, Jesus asked Peter to simply follow, and Peter followed. Peter had no clue what he was getting himself into, and neither did any of the other disciples. In fact, Peter, along with the rest of the disciples, thought they were part of a Messianic Revolution that would overthrow the Roman government. They didn't realize their Messiah was going to suffer and die. Even after Jesus' death and resurrection the disciples were still asking, "Are we going to rule the kingdom now?" They didn't get it.
So far in my life I have paid every cost that God has asked of me. I don't know about the future costs, but I am building a habit of trusting God and following Him moment by moment. God has not yet given me the strength or the grace to handle the "whatever costs may come." He has only given me the strength and the grace to handle costs that are presently here. Until that time comes, I don't know what costs I am willing to pay, but I am following, and wherever He leads that is where I am following.