34‘Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.
35For I have come to set a man against his father,
and a daughter against her mother,
and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law;
36 and one’s foes will be members of one’s own household.
37Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; 38and whoever does not take up the cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39Those who find their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it.
Ok, so Christ said he doesn’t bring peace but a sword, but, what kind of sword?
He tells me I am not to love my family more than him, not that I’m supposed to abandon them just that Jesus’ and the Spirits will comes first. I’m to let the spirit take care of my family and give over control of my life to the spirit.
It is not easy to let go of my control of my life. I keep wanting (and do) to snatch back the reins that I only partially have given to God. So, I am to keep my family life in tension with my faith community life and the faith part comes first.
God how does that work, I have a husband who wants my time, I have school work to complete; do I drop those when I know that you have given those to me? Or, are they the responsibilities you talk of, the cross I am supposed to bear?
Where does the balance come from?
Does letting go of my control of the situation mean I am to just stop worrying but not stop attending?
Hmmmmmm, now there is a thought, Hmmmmmm, Now that is a thought, take care of those things but without concern for how . . . Hmmmmmm
©Ruth Jewell, November 13, 2010
4 thoughts on “Meditation on Matthew 10:34-39”
So…what kind of sword? Would Jesus have us wield a death dealing sword? I don’t think so. At least not my Jesus…maybe the sword of the spirit.
13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
I don’t think Jesus meant a sword of death either. What’s the old phrase that the word is mighter than the sword. The steel of Jesus’ sword was the message he came to deliver and the grip of that sword were the disciples and … anyone else willing to spread that message, including us. I think that giving up control of our lives is the ultimate commitment to the Kingdom and while that is liberating it also creates problems for those in our lives that we love. When we give up control we also give up the control that others have over us and that creates walls or barriers for those who do not understand. How we deal with that issue I think determines our success in our own delivery of the Good News. Putting on the armour of God gives us strength in dealing with the lack of understanding and trust in our lives.
I love your reflection here! My question though is this… What is so “right” about balance? And what does balance really mean? These are the things your post makes me ponder.
I’m not sure about balance either. It’s what I struggle with all the time. I know I must take time for G-d, and yes I mean the word “must”, but at the same time I must make time for those who are expressions of G-d. When the two conflict I have to make a choice and I really don’t want to do that. I want both to fit in place like pieces in a puzzle but that never happens.
I think that is G-d’s joke on us, and her way of making us take stock of each and every descision we make. NOT FUNNY G-D! The challenge for me is to look at what’s important and then decided in what order I do things. I must admit I don’t do that very well. I run on impulse power and survival mode so usually the loudest noise gets my attention. I’m like a drunk on sidewalk, I stagger from pillar to post and I am trying to go straight (or as straight as I can) but it sure is hard.