Tuesday, April 23

Jesus never promised easy

Scripture: 1 Samuel 27, Psalm 141, 1 Chronicles 9, Matthew 10

Observation

In Matthew 10, Jesus sends His disciples out on a preaching/healing mission.  He warns them that it will be very difficult.  

  • They will be arrested and beaten and tried.  17-20
  • They will be betrayed by their own family members.  21
  • They will be hated by all because of Jesus.  22
  • They will be persecuted and called the devil.  23-25
  • They will face opposition and division within their families. 34-36

It’s all very daunting!  But in the midst of the warning, there is a word of comfort:

Matthew 10:29–31 Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. 30 And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.

Don’t be afraid. Your Father, who watches two-for-a-penny sparrows, is also watching you.  

Application

Two applications:

First, Jesus never promised easy.  He promised life to the full—and that it would be a battle.  We are called to be on mission with Jesus and to be like Jesus, and that will be hard.  Jesus’ followers are called to take up a cross—that will be hard.  We will face opposition and hardship—it won’t be easy.  But it will be worth it.  Matthew 10:39 “Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.”  The life you’re looking for isn’t easy, but it’s full!

Second, Jesus did promise the Father’s care.  It won’t be easy but I won’t be alone either.  Our Father is watching.  Nothing is too small to escape His watchful care.  Fear not!  You’re in good hands!  

I’ve spoken recently with a couple friends who got cancer diagnoses.  I remember when I got mine.  Laina asked how I was doing.  I told her, “I woke up this morning in God’s hands, and nothing has changed.  I’m still in God’s hands.”  He knows the number of hairs on my head.  Nothing catches Him by surprise.  I can live without fear because God has got me.

This is the paradox: Jesus never promised easy, but He promised the Father’s care.  We can trust in the midst of difficulty.

Prayer: Thank you Lord for the reminder.  Help me to trust You and not react when facing opposition.  Thank you for Your care.