I met Jesus when I was 18 years old. I am 36 today. I am 50/50 in life with Jesus and life without Jesus. Recently I was reading a book called Humility by C.J. Mahaney and reflecting on the last 18 years. I know there is a whirlwind of spiritual activity in our life when it comes to the works of the Holy Spirit, but when I look back on my relationship with Jesus I noticed there are a number of different attractions to Jesus throughout my life.
The first attraction was stability. I was 18 years old. A season of life that contains a lot of transition. I had been raised to be independent and at an early age and I felt a lack of stability. I wondered if Jesus could bring that stability. What if He was real? What if He was true? It was a blind leap for me, but I kept coming back to, “What if?” It was those two words that radically changed the rest of my life.
As I continued to mature spiritually I was drawn to Jesus because of the character He would bring into my life. I could learn responsibility. I could mature. I could have discipline. I was in my early 20’s and my life felt like an endless roller coaster. I saw other men in my life that had a relationship with Jesus and I was impressed by their character. I wondered, “What if I could have that type of character?”
As I continued into my mid 20’s my attraction to Jesus continued to evolve. I had experienced some stability, some character; not a lot, but some. I began to become attracted to Jesus because of leadership and influence. I saw that there were truths in Scripture that were beneficial to the lives of other people and if I could communicate those truths it could lead to leadership and influence.
In my late 20’s I saw my attraction to Jesus drifting toward purpose. It was in Jesus that I could find purpose and meaning. It would shape my life, my marriage, my children, and it lined up with Jesus. It didn’t mean I was set on becoming a pastor one day, but that no matter what I did for a living I wanted to have the same purpose as Jesus.
Today, 18 years later I find that what attracts me to Jesus is Jesus. I don’t know if any of those other things were right or wrong, but I find that I am more curious about Jesus then I am about purpose, leadership, character, or stability. I can’t say that I have accomplished those other areas and now I am moving on to the next, but that Jesus seems to hold my interest more than those others qualities. Perhaps before I was just seeing parts of Jesus. Jesus is stable, has character, leadership, and purpose. Perhaps I was just seeing parts of Jesus and those qualities were drawing me to Him. I am not sure. I do wonder what the next 18 years will bring? God willing I will be able to continue to learn and reflect.