(Part 2 of 2)
“Then He said to another, “Follow Me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and preach the kingdom of God.”-Luke 9:59-60
Whenever we make the bold decision to go after God, we should not be surprised by the spiritual hindrances that begin to surface. Luke records for us the interaction between Jesus and some of the people He called to follow Him. Their responses sound reasonable, but Jesus seems to have His own perspective on their situations.
In Luke 9:59-60 we have a man who is asking for time to go and bury his father. Jesus’ response may sound harsh, but the greatest spiritual hindrances we face are the excuses we allow ourselves to make for not going. Excuses cause us to remain stuck in the starting blocks. The death of a loved one seems like a valid reason for delaying our obedience to God’s directives, however many of the valid reasons we give turn out to be nothing more than excuses for our own inaction.
Another spiritual hindrance to our going is procrastination:
“And another also said, “Lord, I will follow You, but let me first go and bid them farewell who are at my house.” But Jesus said to him, “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”-Luke 9:61-61
How often do we drag our feet when it comes to obeying God? How often do we prioritize the mundane and never actually get to the pursuit of God’s will? God told this man to follow Him, but his response was “Lord, let me first go and bid them farewell who are at my house.” Saying goodbye to his family became a greater priority than obeying Jesus’ command. To procrastinate means to delay something. In this case, the man was delaying obedience to God’s Word; and delayed obedience is simply disobedience.
For the most part, excuses and procrastination are the greatest hindrances many will face. However, there will be times that the opposition we face is not from within, but from others:
“After these things the Lord appointed seventy others also, and sent them two by two before His face into every city and place where He Himself was about to go. Then He said to them, “The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few; therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest. Go your way; behold, I send you out as lambs among wolves.-Luke 10:1-3
Jesus sent them out two by two to declare the good news of Jesus Christ, but He cautioned them saying “Behold, I send you out as lambs among wolves.” Basically,
He told them to expect opposition! Not everyone is going to be happy with your decision to go after God and in some cases may even to attempt to discourage or dissuade you from going.
Risky faith means silencing every excuse, refusing to delay obedience, and overcoming the opposition of others in order to pursue the heart of God.
Pastor Scott Burr
Dayspring Community Church