February 21, 2024

Beside Still Waters: What’s your purpose?

Therese Apel

Photo by Geoff Brooks on Unsplash

Jesus went up on a mountainside and called to him those he wanted, and they came to him.  He appointed twelve that they might be with him and that he might send them out to preach and to have authority to drive out demons. – Mark 3:13-15

Jesus started out his ministry with quite a following, but this is apparently where He made it official with the disciples.

Imagine following Jesus and getting to know Him, and for him to say these things to you: I’m going to send you out to preach, and you have authority to drive out demons. Just stop and imagine what that conversation would be like. How would your heart feel? What would His face look like? How soon would you want to get started?

Now think about this: He has done that. Notice He did it early in the relationships so they could watch who He is and learn from Him, and one day they could begin their ministries with full authority. But it was meant to be a process. Did they repent before following Him? I don’t know, I think there was a process in that — repentance, in reality, takes time for some. I believe immediately they saw what He had and wanted to become more like him, though.

What about the demons, you say? You have the authority to stand against the dark. Whether it’s actual demons that you’re actively interacting with or just the spirit of darkness and chaos that’s overtaking the world right now, your job is to STAND AND FIGHT them.

You, just like the disciples were, are called to be a light in the darkness, and He has given us all authority over things on earth and in the spiritual realm. This is not a beginner’s task. You have to walk with Him every day. You have to seek Him from a place of humility. You need to get to know him not only as your leader and teacher, but as your brother and friend. When your heart starts to resemble His, He will begin to put you in places where you have to step out on faith, and that is where the journey starts.

At first, being a disciple was easy: Follow this preacher. Make sure the people don’t crowd him. Organize the gatherings. Listen to His teachings.

But it doesn’t stay easy. Most of us won’t be martyred. But every one of Jesus’ disciples died for the cause except John, who was exiled to the Island of Patmos.

Was it worth it? I promise every one of them (except Judas) would tell you it absolutely was. It started when He called them, and now they’re in their eternity with Him. Because they had the complicated job of serving people in Jesus’ name, and standing against the forces of darkness (the two are much more closely related than you might think), their lives had meaning and purpose.

Does yours? ❤️

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