Fight For Friendship With Jesus

Mar 8, 2022

by Joelle Jensen

“There is so much I need to get done!“

As a mother of four children, I find myself saying this a lot. But let’s face it, it’s not just because I’m a mother of four, is it? I was saying this back when I was a single twenty-two-year-old nurse whose only responsibility was to work my three, twelve-hour shifts in the hospital each week. What I would give to have that much time to myself all over again! 

But I digress. Back to being busy. We all are, aren’t we? Some of us dream of the day when things will slow down and we’ll really be able to live with intention, while others of us are too lost in the grind to take a minute to think about what we really want our lives to look like.

Yes, we all know we’re all busy. So where am I going with this? 

It’s unlikely life is going to slow down enough to give us permission to pursue Jesus. We will have to give permission to ourselves. No. Permission isn’t quite the right word, is it? In a world filled with distractions and lesser lovers that only offer imitations of true fulfillment and peace, we will have to give ourselves more than permission. We will have to fight for it.

I can still clearly remember the four years of sacrifice it took me to complete my nursing degree. While friends were getting together and having a blast, I would find myself alone in a library staring at lecture notes. I wanted to become a nurse. It was important to me. And unfortunately, a nursing degree wasn’t something I could just coast through college and get. I’d have to stay focused on what really mattered most to me and prioritize it.

Even more than reaching a goal or a dream, we must remember to fix our eyes on the One who is the giver of life itself. We must guard our hearts against believing the lies that true abundant life can come from anything (or anyone) else outside of Jesus. We must guard our schedules to ensure we carve out precious time to encounter Him each day. We must guard our thoughts and fight against feelings of shame and unworthiness that deny the power of His sacrifice and keep us from coming boldly to His throne. 

The fight doesn’t end there though. There is an enemy who knows the true potential, authority, and freedom we can only experience as we encounter Jesus more and more. His greatest desire is to keep us as far away from that as he can.

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. –Ephesians 6:12–13 (ESV)

We will always have “busy.” There will always be a to-do list. But we don’t have to believe the lie that getting everything accomplished will somehow bring us peace or fulfillment; Jesus is the only One who can do that.

Getting Practical

I put together a list of a few things that help me fight for my friendship with Jesus.  

  • Being in community with other believers who are also running the race alongside me.

  • Time in the Word every day. (As “sheep” we tend to follow what we “hear”—if we aren’t hearing the truth, we probably aren’t following it.)

  • Lots of inviting the Holy Spirit into my life; I know I can’t pursue the Lord without His strength.

Then he said to me, “This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of hosts. –Zechariah 4:6 (ESV)

Joelle Jensen is the founder of First Love Ministries, an organization that gives women tools to live confidently in Christ. Her heart is to challenge and equip women to encounter Jesus in their everyday lives. In a world where consumerism has invaded even our Christianity, she encourages women to take ownership of their walks with God and truly seek Jesus as their First Love. She does this through Encounter Conferences and online teachings. Joelle and her husband, Samuel, currently live with their four kids in Central Florida.




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