Scripture Reading — Luke 9:57-62
“No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.”
—Luke 9:62 —
Leaders know that it’s easier to begin a ministry than to sustain one over a long period of time. The initial enthusiasm launches people with a great deal of excitement, but determination is needed to maintain and finish a project.
On his way to Jerusalem, Jesus met a man who said spontaneously, “I will follow you wherever you go.” But the man did not know where Jesus was headed and what would be involved. Speaking of himself as “the Son of Man,” Jesus made clear that following him would bring hardships that most people would want no part of.
Then Jesus said to another man, “Follow me.” But the man scrambled for excuses, saying he first had to bury his father. In that day, that meant looking after his ailing father (and other family members) at least until the father died. If the father had already died, the man would already be in mourning and would not have been able to join the curious crowd around Jesus that day.
Then, in his response to another man, Jesus indicated that there can be no turning back in service to him.
Jesus taught that following him calls for total commitment. He’s our example. Knowing what lay ahead, he set out and stayed faithful to the end. Being fit for service involves more than good intentions.
Dear Lord, we are grateful that you call us to follow you. Help us to realize what’s involved and to be determined to finish, faithful to the end, no matter what’s involved. In your name, Amen.