Supervisor’s 1st Week Work Evaluation of Prospective Employees:
Luke 9:61,62—Another also said, “I will follow You, Lord, but first let me go and say good-bye to those at my house. But Jesus said to him, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”
Does it seem like Jesus was critical and insensitive with the people who verbally committed to following Him in Luke 9:57-62? Why did He put off people expressing interest in following Him? For starters, He had the ability to see inside the heart. Jesus knew that verbal commitment was no guarantee of follow-through. Earlier He clarified to all who were listening, “If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will save it” (9:23,24). Self-denial and excuses cannot lie in the same bed together. When Jesus heard the word “but,” He knew “no” was not far behind.
How’s your plowing? Are you committed to Jesus? To plow for Him means to cut dirt moving forward in Kingdom formation according to the will of the Father. Jesus knows fully well that our soil at times is harder than clay. Follow means when He gives instructions we do exactly what He says. It’s easy to plow when the sun is pleasant, the birds are singing and the earth moves with ease. But what about those times when Susie is sick and needs my attention; Billy might miss his soccer game; Herb has a new project and needs help; or Alice feels neglected? Are we ministering because Jesus leads us or because we cannot say no to the incessant bells of insistent people? Are we plowing in grace or stuck in furrows by the tyranny of the urgent? I suspect sometimes we stop plowing because we think we know better than Jesus does what we ought to be doing. If His words seem overbearing, it’s probably because we’ve lost our bearing!
For three years, Jesus perfectly trained 12 plowmen. On the night before His crucifixion, they all fled! They left the field when hell seemed more real than heaven. And let’s not criticize them and dare to pretend we would never have done such a disloyal thing. In truth, we leave the field all the time. So, again, I ask, how’s your plowing? I’m not just asking you, I’m asking myself. Better to reach the end of the day knowing I did my best investing for eternal rewards then to spend each day rationalizing why I didn’t hook up the oxen so I could play in the sand.
No Christian has a special work to do. A Christian is called to be Jesus Christ’s own, one who is not above his Master, one who does not dictate to Jesus Christ what he intends to do. Our Lord calls to no special work: He calls to Himself.—Oswald Chambers in My Utmost For His Highest
©2008 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)