When your Friends become Critical of your Faith!

Day 53 (Category: Jesus Christ)

Today’s Reading: Num. 3-4 & Mark 3:20-35

Today’s Reflection: Mark 3:21 And when his friends heard of it, they went out to lay hold on him: for they said, he is beside himself.

Here, the earthly ministry of Jesus is in full throttle. He has just picked out and ordained His twelve disciples, and as He is teaching and preaching throughout the countryside, they can’t so much as eat a bite of lunch without being overtaken by massive crowds who are eager to hear Christ preach or to behold His miracles at work. In either case, it has gotten to the point to where Jesus’ very own friends think it’s time for an intervention!! They believe it has gotten out of hand, so to speak. They have said of the Master, “He is beside himself!” They assumed that just because what Jesus was both experiencing and causing others to experience was not normal, must have meant that it was crazy. I am perhaps as fascinated as anyone else concerning the life and ministry accomplishments of Christ our Lord, but I never would have thought to accuse Him of being beside Himself…or being out of His mind! As a matter of fact, I’m frustrated that His FRIENDS of all people would accuse Him of being such! I mean, why go to the extent of saying something so condescending of someone who heals the sick, casts out devils, and raises the dead? I can think of a lot of words to describe Him, but crazy is not one of them! However, to a world full of doubtful onlookers, the supernatural which they don’t understand is often categorized in their minds as that which is insane or crazy. It’s a quick psychological fix for an otherwise complex reality. You will either have to come to the conclusion that Christ was and is exactly who He claimed to be (the Son of God), or that He was absolutely the most insane person that walked the planet. I, for one, choose to believe that He is the former! But that said, what kind of practical lesson can we learn from Christ’s experience with His friends in this text? We can learn that when we operate in the anointing given to us to fulfill God’s call for our lives, many people including our close friends will not understand us! As a matter of fact, some of them will try to stop us, while simultaneously thinking they are doing us a favor. They simply do not understand (and neither did Jesus’ friends at first) what drives us to do what we do. They may have even said the same thing about you that Jesus’ friends said about Him…that you’re crazy! Regardless, as Jesus learned to ignore the pleas of His critic friends to tone it down, in like manner so should we resolve to do the same! The truth is, Jesus loved His friends too much to lower His performance to their limited level of understanding.

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copyright © by Gary D. Caudill