No one who ... looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.

As they were going along the road, someone said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.” To another he said, “Follow me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” And Jesus said to him, “Leave the dead to bury their own dead. But as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” Yet another said, “I will follow you, Lord, but let me first say farewell to those at my home.” Jesus said to him, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”

I think that the Lord, in these three examples, is speaking to what it means to deny yourself, pick up your cross and follow him. To follow Jesus one must often deny himself the creature comforts associated with a home to lay his head. In like manner familial relationships must always come behind our relationship to Christ. Because of this the gospel can sometimes seem to be a hard message but God is really not interested in playing second fiddle in our lives.

The past is not a place to ponder when we are walking with Christ. I sometimes look back, and when I do, I go to dark places. When a person who steers a plow looks back he is unable to plow a straight furrow. In like manner when we look back we are unable to walk the narrow path that leads to life. It reminds me that the writer of Hebrews instructs us to fix our eyes on Jesus when we run life's race. We are unable to walk a straight path when are focus is anyplace else.

Give me laser focus Lord. Help me to consider you in everything that I do.

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