Thought of the Day November 3, 2017 Unconditional yes

By 9:42 AM

The call requires that we do not second guess our response or qualify it with the proverbial "but":

Lk 9:61-62. Many times the initial fervor gives way to questions concerning whether we have what it takes to continue the journey to perfection. The two prime examples in the Old Testament are Lot's wive and the Israelites in the desert during the Exodus. We don't know why Lot's wife disobeyed the command of the angel not to look back upon Sodom as they left. But her action and the consequence of her action are interpreted that she really didn't want to leave. She preferred to have stayed in the circumstances and life-style she was accustomed to and accepted as normal. In a sense she experienced what she most desired--to share in what was happening behind her.

The people leaving Egypt at first rejoiced. But when the difficulties of the journey became evident, they yearned for the flesh-pots of their past life rather than the arduous demands of the journey to some unknown, future land flowing with milk and honey. Because their hearts were not centered in the will of God for them, but with grumbling and complaining, looking back with yearning to a past way of life, many of them died in the desert.

In each instance the words of Jesus ring true: "Where your treasure is, there your heart is also" (Mt 6:21). While both Lot's wife and the Israelites were no longer physically in Sodom or Egypt, their hearts were still there. They had not fully chosen the path of the Lord, even though they were physically moving on that path. Our hearts cannot be divided. "No man can serve two masters. He will either hate one and love the other or be attentive to one and despise the other. You cannot give yourself to God and money" (Mt 6:24). We can't have the best of both worlds. Rather we must choose which world we really want above all else.

The potential disciple indicated his desire then qualified it. I will follow you, but....For Jesus there is no qualification acceptable. The prize is too great for any qualifications. Once we begin we must not look back nor hedge on our decision. God requires nothing less than total yes--the response of Joshua: "As for me and my household, we will serve the Lord" (Joshua 24:15).

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