I'm not talking about the hate you are thinking of.
"If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, even his own life, he cannot be my disciple."
I'm talking about the kind of devotion to the Lord that makes every other relationship look like hatred. John Wesley's commentary is this, "Comparatively to Christ: yea, so as to actually renounce his field, oxen, wife, all things, and act as if he hated them, when they stand in competition with him. "
I have a precious student in my classroom. She has a mother, father, older brother, and younger sister and they are all from another country. They are missionaries and have been in the States for roughly two years now. The father returned to his home country today, leaving behind his wife and children. They plan to join him later in the summer.
I can't imagine being the mother in this situation. No family anywhere near me other than my three children. My husband on his way to a country that is known for persecuting Christians. Can you imagine the faith it takes to be the wife? Can you imagine what a WONDERFUL eternal lesson this is for the children?
Many would say that it is selfish of him to leave his family. What if he is injured, thrown into prison, or even killed? Wouldn't if be safer if he just stayed with his family? Wouldn't it be better if just waited until school was out and left with the family this summer?
If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. --Jesus
I spoke with the mother today to let her know I would do whatever I could to help her out. She was very somber, of course, and any sign of makeup had been washed off earlier by the rush of her tears. She told me her husbands words were, "I have to go now." The Holy Spirit was leading him to leave now. He understands the sense of urgency. He understands that his life is but a breath and though he does love his wife and children, he loves his God more. We are put on this earth to warn people of God's wrath and give them the hope of Good News. We hear the Great Commission preached all the time, but this man is one who isn't just a hearer of the Word, he actually does it and does it immediately.
Will you please join with me in prayer over the "J" family? Pray for safety, peace, provision, and continued faith. Pray also for the people the father will come in contact with. My student's prayer request was that the "police don't get him." So...pray that the police won't get him :) Thank you!
It's gonna be worth it.