Luke 10: 3 | By Rev George Vink
Looking closely at just the word, “Go!” evoked a somewhat still tender memory. The ceremony done, the bride and groom faced family and friends as I introduced them as “Mr. and Mrs…..” But, instead of moving, the groom turned and looked quizzically at me, the pastor. I responded with an urgent, “Go, Go, Go…!” while thinking, “We’re done! There’s no more. Get going!” Imagine it! I’d introduced them using the bride’s maiden name.
Jesus told the disciples, “Go!” even adding an explanation. It’s not going to be a stroll along the Jordan, enjoying the scenery as you tour with friends. It’s doing something you’ve not done previously. There’s even risk involved and stringent conditions to be met. But, make no mistake about it, it is a command. The NIV’s exclamation mark underscores its nature. There is no choice involved. When Jesus commanded, “Go!” he didn’t add, “If you feel like it!” or “If you’re really ready.” That’s simply the nature of the command, brief as it may be!
The groom in the wedding scenario had every right to say, “We’ve not elected to use my wife’s maiden name. Please correct yourself, pastor!” But, he didn’t. He went proudly with his bride on his arm, later explaining, very gently, his reluctance to go. Is there a lesson to be learned?
After he had appointed the seventy-two, Jesus told them about the plentiful harvest and shortage of workers. It called for action. It called for them to go, even if there’s danger involved.
Today, it’s also time for us as his disciples to go. We may wonder, “Jesus, do you know what you’re telling us to do?” He does! We may not feel ready or even excited about it. He knows! He still says, “Go!” He adds details for the uncertain days ahead and expects obedience. No more, “Ready! Get set.” It’s now time to “Go!” The race to be run won’t happen by our being ready. Neither does it need us to be set anymore. It’s time for us be obedient. It’s time for us to go! What do you hear Jesus saying?
All too often we hesitate to obey Christ’s command and want more explanations when it's really quite clear: It’s time to get going.
Dear Lord of the harvest, we hear you! Help us over our fears and simply obey and be willing to get hurt or rejoice. Just go with us and empower us with your Spirit. Amen.
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