Wanting Special Recognition

3rd Sunday of Epiphany
Scripture: St Matthew 4:12-23 ,1 Corinthians 1:10-18

In Matthew’s Scripture we see Jesus propelling himself into his earthly ministry. He called Peter and Andrew, and then James and John. The roles of James and John have significant teaching about many persons who seek to follow Jesus as their Lord. They were called by Jesus, The Sons of Thunder!
It is just before Passover, and instead of really trying to understand the real meaning of Jesus’ pending death, the brothers start to jockey for position,and topping it off they enlist their mother’s aid to make this happen. Now they have traveled with Jesus for three years. They have witnessed Jesus and the miracle at the home of Jarius where He raised Jarius’ daughter from her death. There were at the Mount of Transfiguration, where they experienced Jesus’ transformation and heard the voice of God. Yet as Jesus drew near to the time of His death and the end of His earthly ministry, they had not yet grasped the full scope of it.

How can we, you and I, remember the amazing life, teachings, death and resurrection of our Lord today if we are guilty of jockeying for special treatment for our humble effort to be faithful unto Him, when we ought to open our lives offering Him all our love and abilities?

In our text from Corinthians is clear that Paul was addressing the leaders of the infant church with the same problem. Are there leaders in churches today who are jockeying for position? Some want the big church, with several helpers. There are churches with huge salaries and many perks. Their desire is often not the main thrust in their ministry.

In what ways does our faith still lack the Lord’s total will in our lives? And is that lack of the Lord’s will in our lives that opens the door for the devil to get into our thoughts and actions, destroying the fruitfulness of our ministry to the Lord. In our desire to be top dog, do we fail to hear the voice of the Lord and to totally submit to His will? Jim Jones is an excellent example of how the devil can destroy our ability to serve the Lord.

When we hear a message Sunday after Sunday, do we hear the Lord or do we hear a teacher mispronounce a word and center on that mistake and totally block out what the Lord is saying all together. Teachers are human. All make mistakes. Any way the devil can cause us to block out the entrance of the message he can and will try to do.

I recall when I had a young family and we traveled 17 miles to the first service before going to a second church. Anyone who has children has experienced the “unholy hour before the Holy hour”. Many times the attitude I had by the time I reached my time to preach, was nothing like the message I was about to deliver. I am sure if the Lord had not been involved in the message the devil would have had a hay-day! It is so easy not to be spiritually involved in the worship service depending what is transpiring in our lives. Our thoughts drift to the list of things we need to do, the child misbehaving, the harsh words spoken on the way.

Here are James and John, who walked daily with the Lord for 3 years, witnessing more than one of His miracles, and yet the did not grasp the real scope of His earthly ministry.

It excites me to think of what might become a spiritually reality if we all, including me, were prepared for the miracle He might offer every one of us. We must tune in to hear the Lord calling and receive the blessings He has for us today and everyday.

Let us stay tuned for what is coming your way as we pray.