Daily D – Luke 10:16
Luke 10:16 Then he said to the disciples, “Anyone who accepts your message is also accepting me. And anyone who rejects you is rejecting me. And anyone who rejects me is rejecting God, who sent me.” (NLT)
Our youth group attended a rather irritatingly strict camp. There were rules against everything. Mostly, the rules were directed toward our group because the team of youth pastors responsible for the programming and such did not care for our new youth pastor. His only crime was that he was not our previous youth pastor, whose employment we had to terminate.
To punish our church for terminating their friend, we got the worst of everything. We were treated with disrespect at just about every turn.
In light of this, I organized a sneak-out and a major violation of the rules on the last evening of camp. We were told all week long at every meeting, “Don’t ring the bell.” You see where this is going.
I planned the mission. I gathered the students. I appointed several for special tasks. Once everyone was clear on our objective, we met in the main room of our condemned and soon-to-be torn-down cabin and said, “If you get caught . . .”
One of our students interrupted and said, “We know, you had nothing to do with this.”
“No,” I replied. “Bring them to me.”
We rang the bell.
Youth workers too out of shape to chase the perpetrators pursued them in their golf carts. When two of our team were caught and brought to me I said, “Get in the cabin. Now!”
The huffing, puffing youth pastors smugly rode off in their golf carts saying, “Your pastor’s got you now. You’re in Big Trouble!”
We gathered in the same room where we had previously discussed our plans. I quieted everyone and looked each one of them in the eye.
“Students, we rang the bell.”
A raucous celebration began.
We never went back to that camp.
Let’s not attempt to create a one-to-one correspondence between this story and what Jesus said. He was perfectly righteous. I was a tad too rebellious. It is amazing, isn’t it, what seventy-two people were willing to do because they knew they had Jesus’ commission, authority, and power? It’s amazing, isn’t it how Jesus celebrated those Sent Ones upon their return and reports? (See verses 17-24.)
Jesus’ famous last words after his resurrection and before his ascension were words of commission similar to those in 9:1-5 and 10:1-12. Jesus is with us and for us as he was with them. He celebrates with us. He thanks and praises our Father in heaven for us.
Today, and every day, we step into his pathway for us with the calm assurance that he is with us and for us. He empowers us for his purpose. He provides what we need. He celebrates when we live lives that honor him and bless others.
Let’s give Jesus a reason to praise and thank our Father in heaven today.
I will live the kind of life that delights the heart of Jesus.
Our Father, empower us to live in the fullness of your purpose. Use us to bless those we encounter along the way. May all of heaven celebrate lives well lived today. Amen.
I enjoy discovering new tools that help me better know and experience God. An acquaintance of mine recently shared a resource I have come to treasure. Lectio 365 is an app with Bible readings and prayers helping us prepare for the day morning by morning, and prepare for sleep evening by evening. You can find out everything you want to know about the app, the spiritual practices, and the people them at this web address: https://www.24-7prayer.com/resource/lectio-365/
The British accents and soothing music enhance the listenability. The simple instructions on how to relax in God’s presence are helpful.
Give it a shot. Try out some of the 24-7 Prayer group’s other resources.
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Jonah 4:2, 3 So he complained to the Lord about it: “Didn’t I say before I left home that you would do this, Lord? That is why I ran away to Tarshish! I knew that you are a merciful and compassionate God, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. You are eager to turn back from destroying people. Just kill me now, Lord! I’d rather be dead than alive if what I predicted will not happen.”
Joel 2:12, 13 That is why the Lord says, “Turn to me now, while there is time. Give me your hearts. Come with fasting, weeping, and mourning. Don’t tear your clothing in your grief, but tear your hearts instead.” Return to the Lord your God, for he is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. He is eager to relent and not punish.”
Hosea 14:8, 9 “O Israel, stay away from idols! I am the one who answers your prayers and cares for you. I am like a tree that is always green; all your fruit comes from me.” Let those who are wise understand these things. Let those with discernment listen carefully. The paths of the Lord are true and right, and righteous people live by walking in them. But in those paths sinners stumble and fall.”