The Challenge of Change
“Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. 35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. 36 And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household. 37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. 38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me” (Matthew 10:34-38).
The words of Christ present with mighty power and complexity. What Jesus proclaimed in the above passages, speaks to the radical and serious element regarding what it truly means to be a Christian. All Christians will endure affliction and hardship for the cause of Christ. The influence of the devil attempts to seduce souls into a life of sinful conformity. Variance will exist and there are multiple explanations for the utterance, but the truth of the matter is that change is challenging. People who change and embrace Christ, leave a world of darkness behind, but that netherworld keeps calling. The variance or schism between those intimately loved is rooted in the fact that sin has been left behind, thus the tenets of the previous relationship has grown stale and irrelevant. If it happened to Jesus, the same is to be expected in the Kingdom.
While Jesus was a small boy He was admired and adored. However, as He reached manhood and the age of ministry, perceptions changed. As He clearly became about the will of His Father, His popularity, fame, and influence in the life of those closest to him declined. Notice the scene as described by Matthew: “And when he was come into his own country, he taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, Whence hath this man this wisdom, and these mighty works? 55 Is not this the carpenter’s son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas? 56 And his sisters, are they not all with us? Whence then hath this man all these things? 57 And they were offended in him. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house” (Matthew 13:54-57).
Despite the difficulty and turbulence you may experience because of your life in Christ, continue to press for the kingdom. Do not expect all matter of persons to speak well of you. Thorns in the flesh keep Christians humble and grounded. Continually stand in appreciation of God’s grace, mercy, and love. Always know that God is up to something. While days may be dark, Jesus Christ is the physician who can administer dosages of the healing balm of Gilead. Satan seeks to make life difficult. Stay authentic and on your spiritual post. In your moments of doubt, distress, grief, and weakness, trust God and do not deny Him. Remember, you are