Scripture: Matt 8:18-27
Key verses: (18-19) 18 Now when Jesus saw great crowds around him, he gave orders to go over to the other side. 19 A scribe then approached and said, “Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.”
Reflection: When I was in middle school, my best friend Cindy and I heard a missionary at our church. There was a girls’ school where they were not only learning but teaching the adults and children what they were learning. Cindy and I were inspired. We wanted to follow Jesus and go to that school. We knew that following Jesus was big and this was BIG. We went home and talked to our parents, sure that they would agree to send us to this girl’s school in Africa. We saw that Jesus was doing something amazing at the school and we wanted to join. I remember everything about the presentation at church but almost nothing about the conversation with my parents. It probably didn’t last long.
The Jesus of Matthew gives orders. (verse 18) He speaks with authority and invites a discipleship that is costly. Is following Jesus worth all the risk and sacrifice?
With the best of intentions, we have turned away from Jesus. We have embraced values and ideas that are common in our culture but are not what Jesus taught. We come to Jesus with a list of expectations for what we need from a relationship. When we decide to follow, there are conditions, excuses and limited time. We need to return the urgency to follow Jesus into our days because the cost of not doing so is BIG. It is a cost to our families, our church, the world and even our lives.
Jesus is not asking us to pick up everything and move to Africa. Jesus is asking us to follow in a way of love that requires some risk.
Prayer: God, equip us for this journey of following. Keep us faithful to you and to one another. All glory and honor are our, Triune God, now and forevermore. Amen.
Author: Michelle Thomas-Bush
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].