1st February 2014

You Are Worth Many Sparrows 

“Do not be afraid, little flock, for your father has been pleased to give you the kingdom.”
Luke 12:32 (NIV)
 

“If you treat an individual as he is, he will remain how he is. But if you treat him as if he were what he ought to be and could be, he will become what he ought to be and could be.” These inspiring words come from the German writer, Goethe. It is good advice on how to treat people in general. It is nice to be around people who are generous with their praise and encouragement; people who believe in us and want to promote us to better things. 

One of my favourite passages in the Bible concerns Jesus’ last supper with his disciples. This section of scripture records how he gave reassurance and encouragement to them. But also on this night, Jesus grants his disciples some pretty lofty responsibilities. Look at the Gospel of John, Chapter 14 and verse 12, “Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these…” 

Did you get that? Up until this time, Jesus had directed his work personally, with his disciples as his assistants. Now he was about to go away, and he was putting them fully in charge. And it gets better! In John 15:15 he tells them, “I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.” This means they were to be more than ‘employees’ reporting to their ‘boss’. In business terminology they were to be full partners in the business. 

This was momentous news for the disciples gathered on that historic night. It is also momentous for any one of us who becomes a follower of Jesus, because what Jesus said wasn’t just for those in the room that night. A little further on in John 17:20-21, Jesus says, “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you.” This means that, apart from the unique pleasure of being contemporaries of Jesus, we who are followers of Jesus have the same responsibilities, the same knowledge, and the same powers as his first disciples. How’s that for your self-esteem? 

Another favourite scripture of mine tells of a different occasion when Jesus was reassuring his followers of his concern for them. With one of the greatest understatements in history he said to them, “you are worth more than many sparrows.” (Luke 12:7) 

Jesus’ plan for what you ought to be and could be, is indeed a glorious one. You are worth many, many sparrows. 

Prayer
Father, we are humbled and gratified that you entrust us with the work that is closest to your heart; the job of bringing your love to the world.
Amen
 

Study by Joseph Casey

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joecaseyAbout the Author:
Joseph Casey is an Elder in the Limerick Congregation of Grace Communion International.

Local Congregation:
Grace Communion International, Limerick
Please phone for venue

Meeting time:
The first and third Saturday of each month at 1:30pm

Local Congregational Contact:
Joseph Casey
Phone:  +353 872592983
Email: joecasey@shannontechnology.ie

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