“Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; and anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.” (Matthew 10:37-38)
There is no middle ground in a relationship with Jesus. Either a person is all in or they are all out. He commands, as Creator and Savior, complete loyalty. There is not one command of His that we can ignore or not obey. He is to be number one in our life and will not stand for second place. This will make us heavenly minded rather than earthly minded. If we are earthly minded we will only see as precious those things we experience here: family, friends, etc. Nothing of this world can come before Him. This is our cross; to elevate our Savior and Lord above all else.
Are we worthy to be called a follower of Jesus? Do we truly put Him first in all our life? Jesus does not say that we are not to love our father, mother, brothers and sisters, etc. It is just that they are not to in any way come between us and the Lord. If at the death of someone we love, will that come between us and the Lord? Will we question Him and become bitter towards Him or will our life be laid at His feet? Will He still be number One in our life even when we are hurt and do not understand? Here is the true test for the follower of Jesus.
Heavenly Father, have we laid all at Your feet? We pray we have. We pray that You will always come first as we walk this challenging and tempting world. When we fall short forgive and heal us. By Your Grace sustain us in our walk of faith and trust in Your Son over all things. Keep our priorities straight so that we pass the test. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Pastor Robert Forsberg is retired from Light of Christ Lutheran Church in Fairborn.