Is Christ my first love? I thought He was. I have proclaimed He was many times. But in light of Grant’s death, I sometimes now wonder? This loss has made me re-examine my affections.
Philippians 3:8 Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ.
Do I really count ALL things as loss compared to the surpassing worth of knowing Christ? Is the love for my Savior such a blessing, so surpassing and transcendent that nothing else is worthy to be called good in comparison, with that one highest good, the never-dying soul. The loss of one’s all in this world, is as nothing in comparison; do I really believe that when I am talking about my first born son?
It was easy to love Christ, and consider all other things as rubbish in comparison, when life was good, comfortable, as it “should” be. When I was receiving blessing upon blessing, it was a simple thing to say I loved Jesus most, more than any earthly possession. When my husband was strong and full of faith, it was easy to thank God for that blessing and imagine myself loving Jesus even more than that gift. But now that he is weak, weary to the bone, fighting everyday for joy, faith, and trust in God’s will, it’s much harder to love Jesus most. When all of my precious kids were around me safe and sound here on earth with us, I would proclaim to anyone who would listen, that I loved Jesus more than those gifts….but did I?
Now that God has stripped me of one of my greatest earthly treasures, do I still love Him most, if I ever did? Is Jesus enough in those moments when I feel like my world is falling down around me? Do I love Jesus more than all of the blessings and gifts he has given me? Or did I love Him because of the blessings and gifts? Did I put more value in the gifts than the giver? How will I know?
I must ask myself one more question: Would I take Grant back today, if the cost were walking away from Christ? No. No, I wouldn’t. First of all, I would never ask Grant to leave the Glory of Heaven to make my life here easier. He doesn’t want to come back, leave the presence of God, and eternal joy. Knowing I wouldn’t call him back even if I could, strengthens my faith and leaves no doubt, I do believe! But it also tells me, I wouldn’t exchange Grant, for Christ. I know, I cannot live this life without Christ, and the life to come is literally Hell, for those separated from His love and saving grace. Jesus is not one more thing in my life. He is my life, He gave me life, He gave Grant life, and He purchased eternal life for me, for Grant, and all who believe, with the cost of His own blood and sacrifice! There is nothing else that I could live for that deserves first place in my heart.
So despite my pain and profound sadness, despite my occasional anger at God, my questions, my daily fight for joy, hope, and trust in my Savior, I can stand here today and say, yes, I love Christ first, I love Him most.