09.16.2020 Devotional

09.16.2020 Devotional

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, first let me go and bury my father.” But Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead; but as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” 61 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 a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.” Luke 9:57-62

Once, right after I graduated from seminary, a young man in my congregation who was a farmer asked me what this passage meant. I wasn’t yet smart enough to remember to always ask first what the person thought the passage meant. So I went on to give a long answer about commitment and the cost of discipleship. It was an answer that would have garnered me an "A" on a theology paper in seminary.

After a moment, the young man looked at me a moment and said, "Hmm. That's interesting. I guess I thought about it this way: when I start plowing a row in my field, I pick out an object in the distance. All the way down the field, I keep focusing on that object, and I don't lose track of it. That way, when I finally reach the end of the row, I know it will have been plowed straight."

In other words, figure out where you are heading, and stay focused. I could see how that would make sense. It was interesting to me that while I read the passage as a metaphor, he approached the passage with practicality. Isn’t it great that Jesus gives us these writings that speak to us in so many circumstances.

The thing about Jesus is that he doesn't stand still. He isn't a tree or a fence post that doesn't move. That means that at the end of your life, when you've followed him as far as you can on this side of existence, you won't look back and see a straight line.

That's all the more reason to stay focused. I find that the cross is a good focal point. It’s even helpful that in most places, I have to look up at the cross, and looking up serves as a physical reminder. Every time we look back to what we've left behind, to the distractions that want us to give up and turn back, we risk losing sight of the one we are following.

Jesus is a tricky one to follow sometimes. He moves fast, and he goes to the places we don't expect. That's all the more reason to "keep our eyes on the prize," and trust him to lead the way.

Prayer

God, as I set out to do my work today, help to keep me focused. Guide me to look up when I need to, and help me not to get distracted if I look back. Amen.

In Christ,

Pastor Denise

 

**Prayer Request:

Please keep Earl Cabe in your prayers. He has been anemic and has had to have a transfusion at St. Peter's. He is home with his son now.

Please pray for George & Sybil Thompson. George has been in the hospital and should be going to a rehab facility. Prayers that Sybil will be able to see him.

Please continue to pray for Craig and Robin Eagen. Robin is on the mend and seeing her doctors regularly, but she has a long way to go.

Please keep Pastor Denise in your prayers. Pastor Densie will be seeing her new cardiac surgeon next week.

Continued prayers for Marian McKusker. Marian had shoulder surgery yesterday.

Continued prayers for Donna Brook who has been in severe back pain. Please pray that they get this under control for her.

**Don't forget it's Mary Novy's 90th birthday in October. She would love to receive lots of birthday cards. You can send them to her home address: 1918 Poppy Lane SE, Lacey, WA 98513

 
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