Blessed… Why Did the Disciple Cross the Lake?

Now when Jesus saw the crowd, he ordered his disciples to go over to the other side of the lake. A legal expert came and said to him, “Teacher, I’ll follow you wherever you go.” Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens, and the birds in the sky have nests, but the Human One has no place to lay his head.” Another man, one of his disciples, said to him, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” But Jesus said to him, “Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead” (Matthew 8:18-22, Common English Bible).

Large crowds seemed to follow Jesus and the disciples wherever they went during the entire Gospel narrative. Some came to seek healing. Who can blame them. If you have been suffering for many years or perhaps your entire life why wouldn’t you come to a man who could fix your problems with only a touch or a spoken word.

Others came for a glimpse of Jesus’ power. We are still a few chapters away (Matthew 14) from Jesus feeding the 5000. But perhaps at least some of those who gathered that day wanted to see what they could get from the miraculous man from Galilee.

Still others came for the show. In an era when entertainment opportunities were very limited, particularly for those without wealth, this was a chance to see someone do great feats. It was time to be amazed.

Others came to learn from this teacher who taught unlike the scribes and keepers of the law. They wanted to hear one who taught with authority. If you are going to listen to someone, wouldn’t it be the one you believed actually knew what he/she was talking about?

When Jesus tells the disciples to go to the other side of the lake, at least in part, it is to get away from the crowds. Think about it. If you are trying to teach a few people how to do something, is it easier to teach with a few people looking on or a large crowd. I think it safe to say the smaller crowd the easier it is to teach. That is the environment Jesus was seeking at the Sea (or Lake depending on your translation) of Galilee.

There were two would-be disciples who weren’t ready for the cost of discipleship. The first is an expert in the law. He tells Jesus he will follow him anywhere. I think that his problem was, he was seeking an easy way to power. He saw himself as Jesus’ number 2. He would be ( in his own mind) a kind of crown prince. Jesus saw through this and essentially turned the man down flat. Jesus was looking for people who would serve, not those seeking their own power.

Jesus still seeks disciples who aren’t looking at him as a source of entertainment. He doesn’t need people who are after whatever power they might get.

What Jesus still needs, what Jesus still calls for is, people who will go to serve. That is our call. That is the call for all of us and throughout all of history.

If Jesus looked at you, what would he see? Would he see a servant?

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Joy, Peace and Thanksgiving,
Keith

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

Published by drjkbroyles

I love Mike Ashcraft's book, "My One Word." For the past nine years I have participated and encouraged others to participate to in the "My One Word" Challenge. My first word was discipline was my word the first year. Since then my word has been focus, sight, jungle, peace, concentration, serve, genuine and this year is fit. I seek to be fit for my health, my family, my church, my ministries. I seek to be fit in any are of my life where God might point to me. I also have a nickname, "Dr. B." When I was a public high school teacher, Dr. B. is what most of my students called me, at least in my presence. I am still called that by many people though I no longer teach in public schools. I am the author of "Average Joe: With an Extraordinary Story" (available on Amazon). The book fits into the genre of "Biblical Fiction" or "Christian Fiction" and features some of the Bible's lesser known characters. The name of my blog is, "Fork in the Road." Life is filled with forks in the road. It isn't a matter of if we encounter a fork in the road, but when will we and how many will we experience in a lifetime. I love to strum my guitar. I am not a great guitar player but I enjoy it. I also enjoy writing music. I get excited with I feel a new song emerging. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog, "Bishop" in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 30 years as a United Methodist pastor, serving churches all over east and southeast Texas, from just north of Tyler to south of Houston, from the Gulf Coast to east of Madisonville. I currently serve Perritte Memorial UMC in Nacogdoches. I spent one year in the classroom, teaching High School government, economics, psychology, and sociology. Cindy and I have been married for 43 years. We have two grown sons and six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. I enjoy preaching and all it's aspects from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading. I have dabble in drawing and "painting" with pastels as well as woodworking and woodcarving. My current projects are two ukuleles. I collect, repair and restore guitars too. I play the guitar (badly, but I still do) I also enjoy working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, TX, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. This blog started out as devotional writings. In August of 2020, I made a major change to the blog, switching to a daily theme format. Sunday Sermon-usually my manuscript sermon Miscellaneous Monday-misc. writing, poetry, ministry Tuesday Thoughts-Devotion Wed. with Wesleys-hist. & theol. of early Methodists TED Talk Thursday-Video & appl. in current theology Five for Friday-5 things I've seen & my thoughts Sing-Along Sat. - Usually a new song I have written I write, "Strumming a G-Chord with Dr.B." to get my thoughts onto something permanent. After all, they say, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. Seeking the Genuine, Keith Lufkin, Texas August 2020

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