JESUS DID NOT CALL US TO BE VOLUNTEERS, BUT TO BE SERVANTS
“As they were walking along the road, a man said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” 58 Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.” 59 He said to another man, “Follow me.” But he replied, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” 60 Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” 61 Still another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say goodbye to my family.” 62 Jesus replied, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:57—62 NIV)
There are challenges in following Jesus. One man expressed that desire saying, “I will follow you wherever you go.” How noble and how wonderful that someone would desire to follow and go wherever Jesus go. I have learned that when someone want to follow Jesus, they are not the one who sets the conditions. I cannot follow Jesus with my own condition. To think about what this man said, I will follow you wherever you go, what a statement I thought. “I” will follow you, meaning, I am the one who call myself to follow you. The “I” is the problem. I thought it would have been better, if he had said, “I will follow wherever YOU want me to go.” I cannot set the condition. I must abandoned myself to what Jesus want me to do, and wherever he wants me to go. The first man who wanted to follow Jesus, HE VOLUNTEERED himself to follow Jesus. I don’t know if this volunteer follow Christ or not. But from the text there is a sense that he didn’t. Because we do not volunteer to follow Christ.
Jesus, answered him, Foxes, have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head. To follow Jesus is to know that I am called to a life of simplicity and trust and to know that I am not in control, but Jesus is. Jesus said to another man, FOLLOW ME. As I noticed earlier that the first man VOLUNTEERED to follow Jesus, until he was confronted with the reality of what it is to follow Jesus.
The second man was CALLED by Jesus. FOLLOW ME. This man had an opportunity to follow Christ when he was CALLED. However, even when we are called, so many still lay THEIR conditions on how they should follow Jesus. The man said, FIRST let me go and bury my father. The first who volunteered, he had an “I” mentality, The I sets the agenda for following Jesus. The second man based his decision to follow Jesus based on what he prioritized in his life. He prioritized his parents. I learned throughout the years that when Jesus called me to do something, it is always with an immediate sense of obedience and trust.
The third one, offer that I WILL FOLLW YOU, Lord, BUT FRIST let me go back and say goodbye to my family. Following Jesus is a calling. And that calling is immediate. When we put Jesus calling first and prioritized in obedience his word, he will take care of all our concerns, whether it be with our families, or time, or finances, Jesus called concerns all aspect of my life. Our calling to follow Jesus does not based on one VOLUNTEERING him or herself to serve Jesus. We come to serve Jesus NOT volunteering ourselves, but know that we are called.
All our priorities will be shifted and change when Jesus call us. I must come to serve Christ based solely that I was called into service by him. To follow Jesus and to call him Lord, means, I relinquish and forgo all my priorities and all my plans, and my family to him. There is no way I can effectively follow Jesus, if I am the one who lays down the condition of how to follow him and how far I am to follow him. Jesus said, NO one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.
I must learn to relinquish and forgo all my plans so I can live in Jesus plans. I must forgo all that I prioritized this year for my personal life to live and follow Jesus daily. I recognized that Jesus did not call me so I can volunteer to serve him. He called me to obey and that includes me dying to self. I don’t want to be someone who serve Jesus and keep looking back.
Father, help me be someone who follow you with all of my heart. Please help me to walk in humility and obedience before you this year. I give my life to you without reservation. I will continue to relinquish the right to have personal conditions as I follow you. Please help me to trust and obey you and do whatever you want me to do. Lead and guide me to fulfill your purposes and plans this year. In Jesus name, Amen!