There is such a thing, you know, as having too much: too much money, too much power, too many possessions, even too much time – if we become bored with it.
It's hard to know, sometimes, when it becomes too much. A good clue is that we lose sight of when and where the reign of God is revealed.
In these next moments, ask God to clarify your view, clear out whatever clouds your vision, and help you to see where God is at work.next >
Peter began to say to him, “Look, we have left everything and followed you.” Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields, for my sake and for the sake of the good news, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this age — houses, brothers and sisters, mothers and children, and fields, with persecutions — and in the age to come eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last will be first.”
Mark 10:28-31next >
Flying standby is a nerve-racking experience. In this cruel game created by the airlines, a hopeful passenger waits anxiously off to the side of the gate without a guaranteed ticket and a blood pressure that increases with each announcement from the loudspeaker. As the ticketed passengers skip by, the lowly standby-passenger has nothing to hope in except for the promise of the gate agent that “We'll have a spot for you.”
In today's Scripture, all of a sudden Peter was flying standby. His prosperity ticket turned out to be void, and the only thing he had left was the word of the One who stood before him.
Jesus gives him a guarantee without a single line of fine print: give it all up for the Good News, and you'll get the eternal, kingdom-edition of it all back. But this trade is not all fun and games, because what you'll gain is stamped with God’s Kingdom-purposes, and trouble always shows up when two kingdoms come face to face.
It turns out, much like flying standby, it's who you know that matters.
John Woodsnext >
Eternal Lord, who gave yourself to the world, show me how to give myself up for you, so that I might be a part of welcoming your Kingdom to this earth more and more each day. Amen.next >
Go now knowing just how much you are blessed.
Find creative ways to risk yourself for the world God loves.
Seek out ways to be extravagant with your gifts,
Making your life useful in God's service.
John Woods is pastor of music and worship at Northside Baptist Church in Victoria, Texas, where he provides leadership in the areas of music, the arts, worship, and liturgy. When there’s time, John likes cluttering up his Mac, reading Dan Brown, listening to “This American Life,” traveling with his wife Lindsay and son Hudson, and exploring the intersections of music, faith, liturgy, and community.