I’m a procrastinator by nature – my M.O. is to put things off until the last minute possible. I never studied for tests until I absolutely had to (usually, the night before)… and when I was in college I found myself doing the same thing with my faith. I refused to go all-in with Jesus because that meant I had to say no to a lot of the “college experience” that society tells us makes college the “best 4 years of your life.” I remember literally thinking, “once I graduate, I’ll really dive into my faith.” Yet, if you had asked me if I was a Christian, I would have told you yes without hesitation. Looking back, there were seasons where I don’t really feel like I had a right to call myself that.
Imagine a woman telling you that she’s a registered nutritionist and fitness coach. As you get to know her and observe her life, you see that she never exercises, only eats junk food, and her degree is actually in business, not nutrition. You would think that woman is a complete fraud calling herself “a nutritionist and fitness coach.” A Christian, by definition, is someone who follows Jesus. To follow means “to act according to the lead or example of someone.” If I’m not walking with Jesus and striving to imitate Him in the way I live, why would I call myself a Christian?
I think for a lot of us, it’s easy for Christianity to become a safety net. We know deep down that we have to be a Christian to get to heaven, but we think we can put off going all-in with Jesus because there are other things we want in the moment that don’t align with the life He calls us to. We want physical intimacy outside of marriage. We want to wear risqué clothes & feel hot. We don’t want to risk being different and not fitting in. But once we “sow our wild oats” or “get it out of our system,” THEN there’s Jesus on the other side.
Trust me, I’ve been there and I get it. But there are a few problems with this mentality. First, it’s a really risky way to live. In the words of Bieber, “youngblood thinks there’s always tomorrow,” but the reality is that every single one of us is going to die at some point, and none of us know when our time will come. Assuming we have tomorrow is assuming that we have control over our timeline, which is a false sense of control…and by choosing our flesh over life with Jesus, we’re risking eternal life— the greatest risk of all.
Second, the things that the world offers and our flesh longs for lead to emptiness, anxiety, depression, insecurity and shame. College was, in fact, NOT the best 4 years of my life because the things I chased and looked to for fulfillment left me utterly empty.
If you can relate to this, I have good news. There’s no shame in your journey and it’s not too late for you. Quite the opposite, actually! God is waiting for you with open arms. The life He offers and our souls need leads to fulfillment, joy, peace, purpose and confidence. Saying YES to go all-in with Him doesn’t mean you’re going to be perfect. We’re all like babies learning to walk. When a baby falls, his parents don’t shame him or
get angry. They get excited at his attempt and encourage him to get back up and try again. It’s the same with God – He delights in our effort. We just have to choose Him and try! Abundant life is waiting on the other side of our “YES.”
Grace Hackett is a born-and-raised Nashvillian. She works for her family’s nonprofit, Love One International, and she’s passionate about sharing the joy that is found in Jesus. She’s happiest when she’s with her husband and pup or family and friends, and her favorite foods are sushi and ice cream.
Follow Grace on Instagram @gracemhackett