PREPARE THE SOIL
Read Luke 8:19-21.
Listen to what Jesus is saying once again. Jesus is reiterating the same point. Something repeated is important.
Today, quietly, tenderly, but fearlessly ask yourself, “How am I responding to God’s word? “Do I merely agree with it or do I really obey it as well?”
Recently, I have witnessed dear old friends come to the realization that they had been hearing God’s word and believing God’s word but not really doing it.
They thought that they were following Jesus. Everyone around them thought the same, but upon closer examination, they discovered that really wasn’t the case. They wept in deep sorrow for all the years that had past, for all the opportunities missed, and for the impact their disobedience had upon their children and family members. They realized that they had been trying to follow Jesus without completely dying to self. No one has the ability to follow Jesus if they don’t follow Him in absolute surrender.
“My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.” There is an inseparable connection between love and obedience. You may be distracted, lulled to sleep, or so challenged by your circumstances that you aren’t able to focus on God’s word and take it seriously. You may be giving yourself excuses. But Jesus’ words are clear:
“If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple.”
“So therefore, any one of you who does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple.”
As painful as it might be, ask yourself this question: “Do I merely agree with God’s word or do I obey it as well?”
It is better to weep now rather than later. Ask the Lord for His help, for His mercy on you, a sinner. Confess your apathy, your fear, and your unbelief. Ask Him for His grace to surrender all. What might it mean? Loss of control? Possible failure? Loss of self? Admitting that things aren’t as they seem?
“O Lord, help me see that you don’t want to take anything away from me, but that you want to give me abundant life! You want to give me yourself!”
Then came to him his mother and his brethren, and could not come at him for the press. And it was told him by certain which said, Thy mother and thy brethren stand without, desiring to see thee. And he answered and said unto them, My mother and my brethren are these which hear the word of God, and do it.
Luke 8:19-21 KJV