“After this he went out and saw a tax collector named Levi, sitting at the tax booth; and he said to him, “Follow me.” ~Luke 5:27
Not many people were happy about Jesus talking with and spending time with Levi, because he was a tax collector. Tax collectors in Jesus’ time were known as “bad guys” and Levi was described by many as a sinner who was unapologetic, proud and greedy. He might have even been identified as a “black sheep” in some circles. Over the past two thousand years not much as changed in our society, there are still individuals being judged as “unworthy” of Jesus and His salvation. Unworthy based upon our biases, even within the walls of our church’s some are not welcomed. The Bible tells us 1 John 2:6, “the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.”
2 Corinthians 3:18, “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.”
Jesus died for all mankind, that mankind would repent and accept Jesus as Lord and Savior, and to follow him. When we accept the call of Jesus, we become his disciple. We are to do and be like Jesus in all we do and say. This is mirroring the values of Jesus, seeing beyond perceived expectations to the unexpected and to believe in the unlimited possibilities of God’s grace, his extravagant GRACE!
We are called to do two very specific things:
1. Love the Lord your God will all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.
2. You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
Matthew 22:37-40, “He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment. And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”
We are sinners, Jesus knows the hearts of ever man, woman and child and looks each of us in the eyes and knows every thing about us, all our imperfections, our secrets and our lies…everything and yet, he still loves us and calls us to journey with him and to follow him. It makes no difference how faithful or unfaithful, good or not so good, we are LOVED…no matter what. Jesus is waiting and calling your name, will you hear and respond to the call to FOLLOW?
Breath Prayer: I am following, Jesus,…lead me!