“Rise and pray that you may not enter into temptation.” Luke 22:46 It is important to understand how temptation works. Temptation grows in power as it builds a position in your soul. You see this same pattern in sports. Think about baseball. The star pitcher is striking everybody out. But...
“Do not seek what you are to eat and what you are to drink, nor be worried.” Luke 12:29
There is a relationship between the things we seek after and the things we worry about. That’s the problem with setting our hearts on things, like health or safety, that are beyond our control.
Think about Mary, the mother of our Lord. The angel Gabriel said to her, “Mary, you have found favor with God.” Mary’s cousin, Elizabeth, said, “Blessed are you among women.” No woman was ever blessed in motherhood more than Mary. But that blessing came with a cost.
When Mary and Joseph brought Jesus to the temple, an old man named Simeon blessed Jesus and said to Mary, “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too” (Luke 2:34-35 NIV).
What was it like for Mary to see the son she bore being crucified? What did she endure while her son was despised and rejected by men? This is the tension for all who are Christian parents.
We want our children to follow Christ, but we also want them to have pain-free lives. The Jesus we want them to follow is the crucified Savior who says to us: “If you are going to follow me, you have to deny yourself and take up your cross daily.”
If your son or daughter follows Christ, a sword will pierce your soul, too. But it will also mean that you are wonderfully blessed.
Where have you recently seen the relationship between the things you seek after and the things you worry about?