By Katie Pearson
“Peter began to say to him, ‘See, we have left everything and followed you.’ Jesus said, ‘Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the Gospel, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last first.’” - Mark 10:28–31
Jesus never skirts around the hard truth with his disciples. He gives them the truth, but he delivers it with hope. If we read Matthew 10 with a self-centered mindset, we see the verses as a list of everything we will lose for following Christ. But if we read the chapter with eyes of faith, the Holy Spirit shows us that this story is more about investment than sacrifice, more about what we gain than what we lose.
In other words, Jesus doesn’t ask us to “travel lightly” to test our loyalty or cause us pain. Instead, he knows that if we relax our grip on what does not satisfy our souls, then we will live from a place of wholeness and peace. The Lord’s plan is not meant to harm us. But we fail to see his kindness when we’re focused on all that we have accomplished or accumulated.
One lesson the Gospel has slowly revealed to me is how much I have relied on relationships for my self-worth and core values. As I enter my fifties, however, I can see the importance of replacing worldly belief systems with a Gospel perspective. As we age physically and mature spiritually, we may have to separate ourselves from family beliefs that aren’t biblical. In other words, sometimes “leaving behind” a parent or sibling doesn’t mean that we’re abandoning them. God’s Word gives us the freedom to minimize influences in our lives that don’t align with God's Truth.
Growing up, I was different from my family because I was gifted in art, literature, and writing. My spiritual interests took me in a different direction than my scientifically minded parents anticipated. Rather than recognize my interests as callings, I disqualified myself from being a woman of God with intelligence and influence.
At some point, we all must forego identities forged in our youth and allow the divine image of God to determine our innate worth and values. God commands us to honor our parents, not abandon them. However, it’s our privilege and responsibility to rewrite what we have inherited, in light of what we know to be true in Christ. My path led me away from home for a time, only to return confident in my God-given abilities and purpose.
My prayer is that my transformed life becomes my ministry, to those at home and wherever God places me. While embodying God’s values might not elevate us in the world’s estimation, our example can shine light to others. As we humbly turn aside from brothers or parents or lands for the sake of the Gospel, our lives can point to a way that leads to true peace and eternal significance.
Lord Jesus, I pray for a spirit of wisdom and discernment to both love well and leave behind what doesn’t reflect the fruit of your Spirit in my life. Thank you for your patience and guidance as I learn daily what it means to walk with you. Amen. We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
Jesus calls the Holy Spirit a "gift" who will guide us, lead us, and empower us. Yet many believers don't experience the power and presence of the Holy Spirit in their lives. This unique Christian small group Bible study provides a space in which we can explore what it truly means to "walk in the Spirit" on a daily basis. The Spirit-Filled Life small group curriculum centers on a 6-part video teaching series examining the life-giving and creative work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Begin to experience the gift today!
Comments will be approved before showing up.