Don’t look back!
Scripture reading for October 22nd: Luke 7-9
“Still another said, “I will follow you, Lord but first let me go back and say goodbye to my family.” Jesus replied, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.” Luke 9:61-62
Following Jesus Christ seems to be an easy assignment at first. It looks pretty simple and may even seem like a glamorous pursuit. In reality, it involves some difficult choices in each individual disciple’s life. The verse I chose from today’s reading had some interesting effects in my own family’s life!
I made an initial commitment to follow the Lord when I was in my early teens. I went to an altar in a small country Methodist church and prayed to receive Christ as my Lord. But I learned little about what it meant to become a committed follower of Jesus until my late 20’s. I had chosen to follow my father in farming and studied farm management at the university. My wife and I were youth leaders in our church and I was a lay preacher in the Methodist church. We were building our family and farming operation while life went on.
We had started farming by raising hogs and had built a big complex of buildings. This had required a lot of borrowed money and sweat equity! God broke into my busy world and renewed His call on my life to serve Him and preach His word! We began to get out of debt and to re-order our priorities according to Scripture. God worked with us and directed us in becoming debt-free and pursue ministry credentials through the Assemblies of God Berean School of the Bible.
As I completed my study for license, a door opened for ministry in our local church. We spent another 5 years farming and at the same time serving as a staff pastor in a large city church. After that time, we had clear direction to stop farming. A little later we also tore down our hog buildings and buried the remains. This was like Elisha burning his plow and not looking back! (1st Kings 19:19-21) We wouldn’t go back for anything! If God has called you to put your hand to His plow, do it with joy! The journey is exciting and the best is yet to come!