When Jesus saw crowds of needy people, he mixed a couple of metaphors to describe them: sheep without a shepherd, and crops ready to be harvested. In either case, decisive measures were required: First he told his disciples to pray that someone would go (Matthew 9:38), but in the next verse (Mt 10:1 and on) he tells them that they will be the ones!
As I read chapter 10 this morning, I jotted down the main principles Jesus gave as he commissioned them:
–Go! Proclaim the Kingdom of God! Give freely!
–Don’t worry about your needs. God will provide.
–Expect suffering, but don’t fear or worry. God will be responsible for you and the outcome of your work.
–Stay faithful and focused, not distracted by family ties, personal ambition or the desire for comfort.
–You will be rewarded!
At that point, a great song came to mind:
“Come and join the reapers, all the Kingdom seekers,
Laying down their lives to find them in the end.
Come and share the harvest; help to light the darkness;
For the Lord is calling faithful men.” (by Twila Paris)