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Are you crazy?
Following Jesus is sometimes difficult; but often we make it more difficult than it should be. We do this when we allow our expectations to blind us to God’s desires. We do this when we let our ideas form our decisions instead of Jesus’ teachings. As we continue to study Mark’s Gospel we will see the Twelve fail in just these ways over and over and over.
In this morning’s sermon we examined the threefold commission Jesus gave to the Twelve from Mark 3:14-15. In our eagerness to prove our worthiness to God we often jump ahead of the Holy Spirit and attempt to do something wonderful for God’s kingdom. Our triumphant expectations eventually splatter against the reality that working with people is hard! We then begin to experience resentments, anger, bitterness, and a whole host of other unpleasant attitudes. Finally, we turn our disappointment to God in utter disbelief that He would let these things happen to us after ALL we have attempted to do for him.
At this point (as the disciples would have to learn) we need to go back to EXACTLY what it is that God has called us to do. Yes, God did call the twelve to preach and to exercise authority over the enemy. But, before they were to even attempt to do any of that they were to “be with him.” As we spend time with Jesus he makes us into the people who can do his work. He shapes us and forms us. He supplies us and equips us. He also clarifies the work that he specifically has in mind for us.
THEN, when we do our work; it may be difficult at times, but it fits who we are, and the gifts God’s Holy Spirit has given us. As we spend time with Jesus he transforms us into people through whom he can work by means of his Spirit. If people think we’re crazy because of how we live and love, may it not be because we’ve run ahead of Jesus on our own ideas; but because we have come to know him so well that we are like him. After all, Jesus was accused of being crazy himself (Mark 3:21).