BIBLE READING: MATTHEW 9
9 And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose, and followed him.
For some reason I’ve always loved this story. Maybe it is my vivid imagination. I have always enjoyed the phrase where Jesus sees Matthew “sitting at the receipt of custom”,
I guess because I picture Matthew going about his daily business, the drudgery of a constant routine. Sitting there amongst all the taxpayers, tax collectors, and Matthew‘s heart longing for more. Do you remember when your heart longed for more?
“JESUS PASSED FORTH”
May you and I never forget that Jesus is the one that came by where we were. Jesus is the one that took the initiative. Jesus is the one that passed by. You and I should be so thankful and thrilled that Jesus cared enough about us to come to where we were.
“HE SAW A MAN”
Jesus saw you. Jesus saw the faults, the failures, the sin, and the darkness in your life. He saw what we really were. And Jesus still sees what we really are. Why would Jesus waste His time noticing us? Why would He ever take a second look? Not only did Jesus see you before you were saved, Jesus sees you now after you have been saved. He sees your heartaches, He sees your fears, and He sees your struggles.
“HE SAITH UNTO HIM, FOLLOW ME”
I do not know if you have ever noticed this, but Jesus did not tell Matthew to get his life right and then follow. Jesus did not tell Matthew all the things that would need to change if he was going to be a follower. Jesus did not mention his faults, Jesus did not try to fix his flaws, and Jesus did not give Matthew a list of rules to follow. Jesus never asked Matthew to follow rules, Jesus asked Matthew to follow Him. If you and I become true followers of Christ, everything else will take care of itself. Nobody will need to tell us to do anything, because the Holy Spirit will do that. And if we are a true follower of Christ, we will obey the Holy Spirit. Dear friend, are you more interested in following a list, than following the Lord? Do you judge your spirituality by your accomplishments, or by your attitude? Is your religion based in your head, or is your love for the Lord based in your heart?
Well there is one way you know if it is real: “and he arose and followed him”.