Enough Said

Matthew 10 is one of my favourite chapters in the Bible. If we ever wondered how God wanted us to live then this is a really good place to start. It’s jam packed full of instructions. More than that, Jesus challenges the very core of why we think we exist, the very things we would give our lives for. Big questions like what do we ‘take pleasure’ in? What will we ‘cleave’to?

Cleave. It’s such a great word. It’s what Jesus says we have to do with him. Cleave to him. It means to ‘stick fast to’ and ‘to become very strongly involved with or emotionally attached to’.

Sometimes people ask questions about how Jesus would like them to live. What’s my purpose? How should I approach everyday life as a Christian? Maybe this is too simpler an answer…cleave to Jesus.

Read Matthew 10:37-39 [Amp] and you will see it even more clearly.

‘He who loves [and takes more pleasure in] father or mother more than [in] Me is not worthy of Me; and he who loves [and takes more pleasure in] son or daughter more than [in] Me is not worthy of Me; And he who does not take up his cross and follow Me [cleave steadfastly to Me, conforming wholly to My example in living and, if need be, in dying also] is not worthy of Me. Whoever finds his [lower] life will lose it [the higher life], and whoever loses his [lower] life on My account will find it [the higher life]’.

I’m not sure about you but this definitely makes me think about how I do life. What do I really take pleasure in? Is my life conformed wholly to the example that Jesus has set? I don’t want to find myself in a position where I am not worthy of Him. One thing is for sure – to cleave steadfastly doesn’t come easily. Everyday I have to choose to live my life for Jesus and stick fast to him, to stay strongly involved and emotionally attached to him. It’s SO worth it though, I wouldn’t want to live life any other way.

How about you? What are the challenges you face to make sure you ‘cleave’ to Jesus?

A Matthew 10 Lifestyle

Are we over-complicating things in the Church?
Are we too focused on the right growth strategy, connecting people and organising stuff that we miss out on the simplicity of a Christ-led life?

Don’t get me wrong. I’m all for strategy and thinking. I love all that stuff. I am much more a long term person who likes to know where we are heading and how we can best get there. But Matthew 10 has got me thinking…

1. It doesn’t matter who you are. Jesus picked a motley crew of likely lads, gave them simple instructions and told them to basically just get on with it. No Pentecost yet. No out pouring of the Holy Spirit. No tongues of fire. Just a very simple thing – you’ve been with me a while so go…

– preach a simple message – the kingdom of heaven is near
– heal the sick
– raise the dead
– cleanse those who need to be
– drive out demons

Trying to remember the last time I did any of these!!

2. The focus was simple. Freely you have received so freely give. You don’t need any bells & whistles to reach out to people. If they receive you then stay, keep going. If they don’t, then move on. The worse that anyone can say is no. Nothing to be embarrassed about.

3. Expect the unexpected. Be on your guard. Be ready for anything but don’t worry about it either. If it’s happening because you are making a stand for Jesus’ sake then the words you need to speak will be given to you. In fact, people coming against you should almost be expected – just don’t allow yourself to not stand but give in to it.

4. Acknowledgement goes along way. Whoever acknowledges Jesus before men will be acknowledged before his Father in heaven. Whoever doesn’t acknowledge Jesus before others will not be acknowledged before his Father. A willingness to lose your own life for the sake of the Cause is a challenge worthy of acceptance.

5. Help someone. Just a small help can make a BIG difference. A cup of cold water may not seem like much to you but to the person who you give it may seem like the world.

Is this too simplistic? Is just knowing Jesus enough?
Love people.
Stand for Jesus.
Be ready for anything.
Trust God.

Maybe….
Lay down your life.

What do you think?