Have you ever been so sure that you were right only to find out that what you thought was right wasn’t? That’s what happened to Jesus’ disciples when He sent them out to preach the gospel and heal those that needed healing. They returned to Him, bursting to share their experiences, one of which Jesus made a point of correcting.
You will find the story in Luke 9. The verses I feel led to focus upon are Luke 9:49-50. “Then John answered and said, ‘Master, we saw someone casting our demons in Your name, and we forbade him because he does not follow with us.’ But Jesus said to him, ‘Do not forbid him, for he who is not against us is for us.’
I can imagine the scene. The disciples surrounded Jesus and took whatever opportunity they had to share their experiences with Him. Perhaps John expected Jesus to commend him for what he said to the guy casting out demons in Jesus’ name. He must have been shocked to hear Jesus teach that others believed in Him and could indeed perform the miracles Jesus empowered His disciples to do. The disciples must have thought that they were totally unique and special and that following Jesus like they did was “it”.
A few verses back, the disciples exhibited wrong thinking by actually disputing among themselves as to who was the greatest among them as a follower of Jesus. That’s spiritual immaturity, and it shows their mindset. It shows they were still thinking physically and not spiritually. They had a lot to learn and to unlearn. Following Jesus is not about greatness. It’s about humility and submission. It’s about love in the spiritual sense.
We are all influenced by the society around us and bring that baggage with us when God calls us into His spiritual family. The great news is that just because we are thinking wrong in some areas does not mean it has to continue. Pastor G and I pray that all of us who follow Jesus and live His way of life continue to grow towards spiritual maturity and shed the ways of thinking and being that don’t belong in our lives, minds and hearts anymore. That’s today’s encouraging word.
copyright 2013, Pastors George and Sharon Billington, All Rights Reserved