"As the Father has sent me, I am sending you."
I was up early this morning, since I could not sleep. I figured that it might be a good idea to sit down and trying reading through today's devotional. At Living Waters we give out free copies of Indeed; Exploring the heart of God. I'm still not exactly sure why, but todays meditation struck me. It will most likely take the rest of the day for me to process all of it. Here it is.
In Word: A cursory reading of this verse might give us the impression that Jesus is saying, "The Father first sent Me; now it's your turn." But there is more to this verse than that. He is also saying, "In the very same way that the Father sent Me, that's how I'm sending you." The crucial question then becomes; How did God send Jesus?
Philippians 2 gives us a good understanding of the nature of Jesus' mission. He humbled himself, He took the form of a servant, and He became obedient to the point of death. (Phil 2:6-11) Jesus went from heavenly riches to earthly rags; from exaltation to humiliation; from authority to obedience; from ultimate significance to ultimate rejection; from comfort to hardship; from safety to danger; from glory to sacrifice; and from life to death. And He calls us to go into the world in exactly the same way.
Read that list again. Every one of those humbling transitions goes against our grain. We're trying to work our way up, not empty ourselves. We want more significance, more safety, more authority, more attention, more comfort. But Jesus calls us to die to ourselves, to take up our cross and follow him. He sends us out as He was sent.
In Deed: Does your attitude match that of Jesus? Do you take your mission seriously enough to go into the depths of this world - whether those depths are in another country, your own city, or even your own family - and live the gospel of humility for others to see? Jesus' mission is to redeem this world, and He intends to shine the light in every vile, dark corner of it - through us. He calls his followers into prisons and concentration camps, into opium dens and brothels, and into leper colonies and psychiatric wards. He also calls them into night clubs, corporate conference rooms, university classrooms, and sports arenas. These is no place too uncomfortable, dangerous, or unlikely. Are you willing? As the Father sent Him, so He sends you.
Perhaps I need to work on my attitude.