It is our nature to be ever-changing. From birth, we grow, learn, make mistakes, correct them, move forward and go back. These and others are changes that we seem to embrace. Some problems we solve, while others we just we just give up on and walk away. All of this happens many times within the course of an average day. But then there are some changes that seem impossible for many to make. If made, these could alter the course of our lives for the better as well as cause our world to be a much better place.
When Jesus was with His disciples, He was training and equipping them for a time when He would leave them. He knew that part of His mission was to become an atonement for their sins, as well as our own, through His sacrifice. This meant that at some point, His physical interaction with them would change since He would be crucified. The Gospels show us that He very patiently took time to prepare them for what was coming. In John 16:5-8, He told them:
“But now I go away to Him who sent Me, and none of you asks Me, ‘Where are You going?’ But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you.”
Jesus also knew that the change in their relationship after His death would bring about an event that would far exceed what they were already experiencing. By going on to complete His mission, Jesus would be making it possible for each of the disciples to become filled with the Holy Spirit. This was what they needed for each one of them to complete their own mission. Although He saw that “sorrow was filling their hearts,” He told them that far greater things would come because of His departure.
These men were sad because He told them that He was leaving. Their first response had been a negative one, rather than choosing to embrace the changes that would necessarily take place. Would you and I have responded differently? I think not! Most are very comfortable when they feel that they know what will happen, and uncomfortable when they do not.
Throughout the scriptures, God demands of us our obedience, trust, and faithfulness. Often what He gets instead is rebellion, fear, and a lot of vacillating. Until we learn to embrace the Christ-honoring changes that come our way, we will seldom please Him. Until we change our thinking, we will be living a substandard existence. Even so, our Lord patiently continues to invite us to faithfully follow Him. His invitation is simple; change our thinking so that we He can change our life.
I can only imagine how great it would have been to be see the first miracles and walk the first steps of the first sermons of our Savior! Even so, I get to every day In Faith, “Now Faith”, with the Comforter, which is what He Loves, one day we shall judge the angels because of it…
Thank you Wayne, as always , your words speak Godly wisdom.. I remember 13 years ago you suggested we read 1 Corinthians 13 every day for 30 days.. well….starting today I’m gonna follow those instructions…Love you brother Wayne and keep those words of wisdom coming.. They give glory to The Lord!