What Are We Waiting For?

May 17th, 2007 • Category: Encounters with Jesus
by David Zier

Today’s scripture: Luke 5:27-32 (NRSV) (The Message)

As you read, consider: What might God be saying to me? Summarize your thoughts in a sentence or two.

My thoughts (David Zier):

When I read stories like the one about Levi, I am amazed at how someone can just let go of everything, leave everything, and follow Jesus. I have too many questions: What does it mean to follow? What must I do? What must I give up?

As the story continues, and Levi invites Jesus to a feast at his house with other tax collectors, the Pharisees and the scribes complain to Jesus about associating with such people. The Pharisees seem to be more concerned about appearances, associations, and running with the right crowd, than with bringing the message of God’s love and repentance to everyone. Jesus was more concerned about being a physician for all of our ills. Jesus tells the Pharisees that doctors aren’t for the healthy, but for the sick. We need Jesus to call us to be our best.

There is some irony here. It seems clear that Jesus thinks the Pharisees are being self-righteous. So, it might be obvious that Jesus was there for the “sick” tax collectors, but wasn’t he also there for the Pharisees? Didn’t he also show the self-righteous that they require repentance as well? The Pharisees — although shown this message by Jesus over and over — never seem to grasp it.

I wonder if we grasp it. Do we let go of our self-righteous attitudes, those attitudes that make us think we belong in a higher place than others? That somehow my religiosity or my political views or my place in the world is so much better, more proper, and more right than others that I need to let others know?

Or, do we let go of all our stuff, like Levi, leave everything behind, and grow in the grace and love of God, and follow Jesus?

Thought for the day: Will I, like Levi, leave everything, get up, and follow Jesus? If so, why not right now?

We encourage you to include a time of prayer with this reading. If you need a place to get started, consider the guidelines on the How to Pray page.

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