Proverbs 20 11-20-20

Crucified with Christ…crucified with Christ…crucified with Christ…have it memorized, yet? It’s how we are to live.

Many claim to have unfailing love,
    but a faithful person who can find?

Once we put our faith and trust completely in Christ for salvation, we might think that we would trust Him for everything. Actually, we spend the rest of our lives unlearning what we’ve learned in this world and learning how to depend upon Him. Here are three examples of people who wanted to follow Christ, but had a hard time launching (Luke 9:57-62):

57 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.”

Matthew 8:19 reveals that this person was a teacher of the law. Jesus, knowing His heart, saw straight through to his greatest concern, which was his trappings. He either drew security from his home, his family, his goods, and his position, or he liked his creature comforts. Jesus was letting him know that if he followed Him, he would have to give up all of those things.

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.”

Lest we think that Jesus was being insensitive, we must understand the phrase, “bury my father.” The man was saying that he wanted to stay with his father until he died. In other words, he would follow Jesus once he had gotten married, raised a family, and taken care of his parents until they died and he received his inheritance. Jesus was saying to come NOW and follow Him.

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.”

Evidently, there was some insecurity in this person. It seems that Jesus knew that if he went back to say goodbye to his family that he would be dissuaded in following Jesus. Family’s like that. They act out of feelings and, usually, what’s best for them. They may have had very good reasons for him not to follow Jesus–it doesn’t matter. If we trust Jesus with our lives, then we can trust Him to take care of whatever we leave.

“Crucified with Christ” is my mantra. It is part of Galatians 2:20, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live. This life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God who loves me and gave Himself for me.” If He loves me enough to give Himself for me, then I gladly die to myself and live for Him. Him living through me is that for which I live! What sweet fellowship with Him! Eternity has truly begun for those who discover this truth.

This morning, read these passages in your own physical Bible (you’re more apt to remember them) and then give yourself to Him. Commit your life to Him for today and then allow Him to guide your every thought and action. Then, do it again tomorrow. Be His disciple!

Abba, I crucify myself; I take up my cross and follow You today (Luke 9:23). I deny what I want and what I think and commit to follow Your lead on everything. Make me sensitive to Your Spirit’s leading. May Your hand be upon mine in everything that I do; may You guard and guide every word that comes from my mouth–harness my thoughts! Being with You is what it’s all about. Amen.

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