I’m reading “A Year with Jesus”1 which includes daily reflections on Jesus’ words, life, and impact. The author reviewed Matthew 8:28-34 which details Jesus’ interaction with demons. I’ve heard many times that the demons obeyed Jesus, but the author then asked, “are we as obedient as the demons?”
That question reminded me that whenever Jesus commanded the demons they did what He said. Even in the book of Job, Satan himself was limited by God’s parameters (see Job 1 and 2). So are we as obedient to Jesus as the demons were?
Jesus says, love your neighbor as yourself.
We say, only if they love me the way I want.
Jesus says, Forgive and you will be forgiven
We say, They deserve my grudge because of what they did
Jesus says, Deny yourself, pick up your cross, and follow Him
We say, I’ll deny certain parts of my life that don’t hurt or interfere with what I want.
Jesus says, Don’t worry about tomorrow
We say, Were you at my last family gathering?!
How can I not worry?
God says: Honor your father and your mother.
We say, They don’t deserve to be honored because of what they did or didn’t do.
Obedience can come hard when adults with divorced parents have experienced and continue to experience a variety of family-related challenges. But Jesus has the power, wisdom, and knowledge to know what’s best…always. And God’s word helps guide our responses and behaviors—regardless of how challenging some situations can get.
So, are you as obedient to Jesus as the demons were? Kind of a crazy question…unless you really think about it.
Lord, please forgive our disobedience and selfishness. Help us to love You and trust that You always know what’s best for us. Help us to trust your wisdom when dealing with the people in our families and fractured families. And thank you for your patience with us. In Jesus name, Amen.
1”A Year with Jesus: Daily Reflections and Readings on Jesus’ Own Words” R.P. Nettlehorst, Thomas Nelson, 2011