In all my years of being a Christian, there’s nothing I love more than seeing another person become a new follower of Jesus.
It’s such a joy to see someone go from living for themselves, with all the guilt and uncertainty, to now living for Jesus, with all the freedom and certainty for eternity.
Yet, not everyone shares the thrill of seeing a person become converted to Christ.
I was reminded of this when I read again about how Jesus sent a mob of demons out of a man, which led to the death of a large herd of pigs.
Sure, the impact of losing the livelihood of the livestock was a significant thing, but to see the joy and relief of the once-possessed man should certainly have overridden such concerns.
Yet, we read in Luke 8 that when the people saw the man who was freed from the demons “fully clothed and perfectly sane,” they were all afraid, and so:
“all the people in the region of the Gerasenes begged Jesus to go away and leave them alone, for a great wave of fear swept over them.” (Luke 8:37)
The people were face-to-face with a modern miracle that brought complete release to a tortured man, and yet all they could do was drive Jesus away because of their fear.
When people meet Jesus and are changed, it can be confronting to others.
For, their new life will mean that they now turn away from some things that they once embraced and encouraged.
If some of those former things are valued highly by others, then that person’s conversion to Christ will be considered to be a challenge to others.
Yet, when a person knows how good it is to be forgiven by Jesus, there’s nothing that anyone can say that will take away that deep joy and certainty for eternity.
(Photo credit: K-State Research and Extension via Flickr.com)