Now large crowds were travelling with him; and he turned and said to them, ‘Whoever comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and even life itself, cannot be my disciple. Whoever does not carry the cross and follow me cannot be my disciple. For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not first sit down and estimate the cost, to see whether he has enough to complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it will begin to ridicule him, saying, “This fellow began to build and was not able to finish.” Or what king, going out to wage war against another king, will not sit down first and consider whether he is able with ten thousand to oppose the one who comes against him with twenty thousand? If he cannot, then, while the other is still far away, he sends a delegation and asks for the terms of peace. So therefore, none of you can become my disciple if you do not give up all your possessions.
Today is Wednesday, the 6 November, in the Thirty First Week of Ordinary Time.
Madison Cunningham of The Porter’s Gate, sings ‘Little Things With Great Love’. As you listen, take a moment to pause and listen to God’s voice…
Today’s reading is from the Gospel of Luke.
How on earth can we reconcile ‘hating’ our Father, Mother, Wife and children with our God of Love? The answer, of course is that that is not what Jesus intends us to do. Instead he is reminding us that our primary – not our sole – duty is towards God. The things of the world, although important, should never take precedence over God. Think about your own life. Have you allowed anything to take precedence over God? Are there aspects of your life that need to be brought into line? Ask God for help to deal with them now.
‘… None of you can become my disciples if you do not give up all your possessions…’ Again, Jesus is not saying that possessions are bad in themselves; instead, he warns us against the danger of being possessed by our possessions! Am I inclined to allow myself to be beguiled by physical possessions? Do I believe that I will find happiness if I own x. or y? If that's you, ask God to help you see more clearly.
Jesus tells us that we must love God even before life itself. But we shouldn’t hate life: it’s good when we can rejoice in the good things life gives us, and we should see these as blessings from God rather than things we are entitled to. As you listen again, really focus on what Jesus is trying to tell us in this passage.
Our passage today asks us if we are ready to take on the burden of discipleship. Only you can answer that question. Spend these last few minutes praying about your response to this.