WHOM DO YOU FOLLOW?
Jesus, lead me today to discover the truths of Your Word.
Read Matthew 8:14–22
14 When Jesus came into Peter’s house, he saw Peter’s mother-in-law lying in bed with a fever. 15 He touched her hand and the fever left her, and she got up and began to wait on him.
16 When evening came, many who were demon-possessed were brought to him, and he drove out the spirits with a word and healed all the sick. 17 This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah:
“He took up our infirmities
and bore our diseases.”
The Cost of Following Jesus
18 When Jesus saw the crowd around him, he gave orders to cross to the other side of the lake. 19 Then a teacher of the law came to him and said, “Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.”
20 Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.”
21 Another disciple said to him, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.”
22 But Jesus told him, “Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead.”
New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectThink about how you address Jesus. How does the way you approach him reflect your relationship with him?
The choice of a leader has far-reaching effects. Whom we choose to follow matters deeply. What adjectives would describe your ideal leader? What kind of a leader do you see in Matthew 8?
Jesus was already attracting large crowds (8:1,16,18). His teachings were inspirational (Matt. 5–7). His new style (7:28,29) challenged the status quo. His command had re-creative power (3). One word from Jesus transformed people’s lives (8,13,16). Here was a leader with integrity: the compassionate Jesus seen in public (3,7) was the same be-hind closed doors (14). He had time for everyone (compatriot and foreigner, male and female). No wonder people were lining up to join his band of disciples (19).
Jesus’ enigmatic responses to the two would-be followers remind us that we follow Jesus on his terms not our own. He expects us to understand and accept the costs of following him (20) and not let anything else get in the way (22).
Are you facing any difficulties or distractions as a follower of Jesus? How can you choose to focus on Jesus today instead of worrying over your problems?
Pray for Christians who are finding the cost of following too much to bear.
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