Wednesday, June 26, 2019
Luke 9:57-62: As they were going along the road, someone said to Him, "I will follow you wherever you go." And Jesus said to him, "Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head." To another He said, "Follow me." But he said, "Lord, let me first go and bury my father." And Jesus said to him, "Leave the dead to bury their own dead. But as for you, go and proclaim the Kingdom of God." Yet another said, "I will follow you, Lord, but let me first say farewell to those at my home." Jesus said to him, "No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the Kingdom of God."
Jesus Seems Harsh:
Following Jesus seems harsh. There is no cushy bed in which to sleep. Not even an old "No tell motel." Jesus also seems down right mean to tell a person who wants to follow Him that he can't even bury his father. Nor can another say goodbye to the family he loves. Why is Jesus so mean?
I think that Jesus is not being mean, but being brutally honest. Following Jesus takes commitment, dedication, and even a single minded focus. Jesus is basically saying, "Don't let the past hold you back from the future life that you have."
What Keeps You...
From following Jesus? Is it work? Is it play? Is it entertainment? Is it self pleasure? Is it other priorities? What is holding you in the past? What is keeping you from seeing the future?
What is keeping you from following Jesus? Where is you commitment to Him?
When we realize what Jesus has to offer, following Him in all that we do will seem like a no brainer. When we realize the total and complete forgiveness of sins by means of His death on the cross. Think about this. You think it's hard to follow Jesus? Would you take on the curse of dying on a tree in order to give you life? Jesus did. His death was brutal, hard, and mean. Jesus knew what was coming. Jesus knew the harsh reality that His life was going to face. And He took it.
Then, in order to bring new life to us, Jesus was raised from the grave. We are free from the pull of the past in order to embrace the future with Jesus. And that future is freedom from sin and eternal life with God.
Commitment to Follow:
Now with that freedom "In hand," we see our lives from a Jesus point of view. We see our homes, work, family, play, and pleasure as secondary to following and living with Jesus. Following Jesus takes some harsh reality questions to ask.
Does that mean we quit them?
If what we do gets in the way of spending time with Jesus and what we already know what He wants us to do, then... If how we focus our lives on ourselves and our wants and not on what Jesus has already told us to "Love the Lord with all your heart, soul, mind, strength, and love your neighbor as yourself" then...
This is worthy of more discussion. Please weigh in with your comments.
Pastor Robert Hemsath joined Faith Lutheran Church and School as the Senior Pastor in January 2017. Pastor Hemsath comes to FLC from Christ the King Lutheran Church in Waxahachie, TX. He has also served congregations in Aberdeen, ID and Pocatello, ID. He has been a Lutheran pastor for the past 20 years.