I hope your eyes didn’t start to glaze over. This is a tough chapter. Jesus reminds us that it isn’t easy being a disciple of Jesus. When I visit people in the hospital inevitably at one point or another someone will tell me: “Getting old isn’t for sissies.” Not probably the right thing to put in a blog, but being a disciples of Jesus Christ is not smooth sailing in any way. Often we think that once we accept the Savior then things will get easier. That is not what this Scripture tells us.
Most of us would consider family as the most important thing in our life. Well, Jesus says something very different. Our allegiance has to be to our Savior first and foremost. If you look at vs. 16-39 it is all about family strife and how Jesus did not necessarily come into the world to provide peace and harmony. Rather, because of Jesus many families will be divided.
I will never forget Hassim who was a part of our Young Adult and Student group in Russia. He came to the program with a friend and he was curious what the group was all about. We would get more than 100 young adults and we would have Bible Study, games, and give out food at the end because many of the students were struggling to make ends meet. Hassim came to the group and gave his life to Christ. The next morning we received a panicked phone call from his friend who told us that his family had kicked him out of the house and refused to let him back in and were threatening to kill him. Becoming a disciple for Hassim meant giving everything up, literally.
The chapter begins with the calling of the disciples but it contains and ends with the realization that becoming a disciple is dangerous business. I wonder how safe we feel as Christians. I guess pretty safe which ought to give us pause and wonder if we are doing things right.