February 27, 2018

Great Costs, Great Blessings

Luke 18:24-30

Peter said to him, “We have left all we had to follow you!”

—  Luke 18:28

The interaction with the wealthy ruler (Luke 18:18-23) left Jesus’ listeners—including his disciples—with many questions. The people asked, “Who then can be saved?”

Peter exclaimed, “We have left all we had to follow you!” And Jesus understood Peter’s concern. Jesus knew that his closest followers had left valuable relationships behind to follow him. They had left their homes, wives, children, aging parents, and promising careers. They had left the most crucial relationships people have in life. It was not about wealth or power for the disciples; they had left family relationships and all the blessed conversations and memories that go with them—all for the sake of being with and following the Son of God. So they needed reassurance.

Jesus laid out to a fearful Peter and a frightened crowd that the blessings of full life in God’s kingdom happen both now and in the life to come. He held out the promise that leaving family relationships for his kingdom ­vision would result in healing and restoration. Jesus promised that no one keeping company with him would be shortchanged.

He assures us also that seeking his kingdom with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength will birth renewal in personal relationships that bless and model the healing of all relationships in God’s kingdom. Everything begins and ends with Jesus.

Lord, we know that life on this earth can be tough. Help us to look forward to the time when all relationships are healed in your eternal presence. In your name, Amen.

About the author — Reginald Smith

Dr. Reginald Smith is senior pastor at Roosevelt Park Community Christian Reformed Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he has served for seventeen years. He has also served as a pastor in Paterson, New Jersey. He and his wife, Sharon, have three daughters, Janelle, Katrina, and Mariah.

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