What does Jesus want from you? The most obvious answer is that Jesus wants us to love and obey him. But how does he want us to love and obey him? What does it look like?
It’s a fair question to ask because, let’s be honest, Jesus can be hard to gauge sometimes. When you read the New Testament, Jesus constantly did things you just don’t expect from normal people.
I don’t mean he was moody or irrational. I mean he was constantly challenging the status quo. You’d say some pat answer you’ve been getting gold stars in Sunday school for your whole life, but rather than pat you on the head like every other religious teacher you’ve had, he’d call out your deepest idols in front of the whole class (Mark 10:20-22). Jesus really did keep people guessing during his earthly ministry, but there was always a method to his apparent madness.
Mark 2:1-12 is a great example of Jesus challenging normality but with a specific purpose. Jesus wants many things from his followers, but here we can see at least three specific things Jesus really wants from you.
Jesus Wants You to Pursue Him
Mark 2:1-12 takes on so much more depth when we realize the roof these men put a hole in was to Jesus’ personal home. Notice Mark 2:1 states, “it was reported that [Jesus] was at home.”
When celebrities are surrounded by the paparazzi, they secretly enjoy the attention while publicly expressing their offense and desire to be left alone. But when they suddenly are no longer famous and no one follows them around to take their picture, they are devastated and start doing ridiculous things to get attention (i.e. celebrity reality TV-shows).
Jesus does the opposite. He is never offended when people seek his help despite violating his personal space. Unlike a celebrity who desires the fame and yet complains about the fans, Jesus encourages us to obnoxiously pursue him in faith.
Jesus is never annoyed when we pursue him relentlessly. He loves us, and he knows what’s best for us is to love him back. But he doesn’t just want us to love him like an average person loves another average person. Jesus wants us to pursue him like these men pursued him. He wants us to figuratively dig holes in the roofs of houses to get to him at any cost.
So what does Jesus want from you? He wants you to pursue him more than anything else in life.
Jesus Wants You Put Obnoxious Faith in Him
It is a very obnoxious, rude, and inconsiderate act to cut in front of a long line, make a hole in the roof to get to the owner of the house, and then request that the owner would give you a lavish gift. But this is exactly what Jesus commends these men for doing.
Jesus was already extending the utmost hospitality. His house was completely packed and overrun with people, “And many were gathered together, so that there was no more room, not even at the door” (Mark 2:2).
Not only was he hosting too many people, he was teaching too. And then right in the middle of his sermon, a huge distraction begins to take place and some guys he didn’t know started breaking in through his roof. A normal pastor or public speaker gets annoyed when they are interrupted by a crying baby or a bunch of people getting up to use the restroom, especially when they are right in the middle of saying something important to an attentive audience. Could you imagine how distracting it would be for guys to be coming through the roof of your house right during your big speech? If this happened in a normal church, the pastor would be giving the head-nod to security.
The average person would have been sent into a rage of personal offense at any one of these things taking place at their house. But rather than rebuking this ridiculous and overly zealous act, the only people he rebukes are the Pharisees whispering in the corner, politely not saying what they are truly thinking in their hearts (Mark 2:8).
Jesus is nothing like normal people. Relating to Jesus is nothing like relating to other humans. In the real world, you don’t put a hole in the host’s house and expect to be greeted with a smile and a miracle.
What this story reveals is that Jesus wants us to act differently towards him. He doesn’t want us treating him like a normal person, because he’s not. He wants us to treat him as our God, because he is.
So what does Jesus want from you? He wants you to put obnoxious faith in him.
Jesus Wants You to Treat Him Like God, Because He Is
“Who can forgive sins but God alone?” (Mark 2:7). God already knows what we are thinking before the thought ever comes into our minds (Mark 2:6-8). And only God has the power to heal our deepest hurts with just a few words (Mark 2:9-12). Jesus did all of these things in Mark 2:1-12. What’s Jesus trying to show us? He’s clearing sending a message, “I am God.”
The obnoxious men where the ones Jesus was pleased with because they were treating him like God. The polite men were the ones Jesus was displeased with because they were treating him like a normal person.
Jesus doesn’t want us to be polite. He wants us to be passionate, to pursue him in an obnoxious way, to do whatever it takes to find him, even if it means putting a hole in his house.
Jesus isn’t a normal host. He’s God, and he wants us to pursue him like we believe he’s God.
So what does Jesus want from you? He wants you to treat him like God, because is.