2 Great articles about Dallas Willard....here and here.......
We're afraid to follow Jesus, because then we'd have to die and rise with him.......... Do we expect a new Christian life will just happen without our having to make inconvenient changes in how we live Monday to Sunday? If so, we are like people who want to be solvent and who also max out their credit cards. Or people who want to be sexually pure and who also bookmark porn sites. Or people who want to speak Japanese without all the tiresome study that's normally required. Here's Willard's devastating summary:
The general human failing is to want what is right and important, but at the same time not to commit to the kind of life that will produce the action we know to be right and the condition we want to enjoy. This is the feature of human character that explains why the road to hell is paved with good intentions.
Prescription So what to do?
The first thing to do is to trust our Christian friends who have died with Jesus Christ when they tell us it's going to be okay if we do it, too. This, in my judgment, is one of the greatest services offered to the church by our Christian friend Dallas Willard. He is a brilliant, modest, immensely experienced Christian older brother, calling to us from the Resurrection side of things. His books all call out, in one way or another: Come on over. It's going to be okay to die first. You have to do it, and you can do it. Not even Jesus got a resurrection without a death, and he'll be at your side when you surrender your old life. Trust me on this. If you die with Jesus Christ, God will walk you out of your tomb into a life of incomparable joy and purpose inside his boundless and competent love.
The disciplined life will cost us. But, as Willard notes, the undisciplined life will cost us far more, now and forever.