My family does not travel light. We tend to cram as much of our house as will fit in our van. Clothes, toys, laptop, dog kennel, dog, more toys, change for the toll booths, books, snack food, pillows, blankets, some more toys, coolers (plural), swimming gear, lawn chairs, fishing poles and tackle boxes, another bag of toys, generator, yak, bricks, industrial belt sander (just in case), bust of Abraham Lincoln, more toys, saddles (even though we don’t ride horses), fifty pound sack of flour, iron skillet, jars of pickled herring, copies of the Magna Carta (just in case), dried meat, hardtack, hyperbaric chamber, toys, toys, toys…
You get the idea.
When I read Luke 9, I shuddered:
1 And he called the twelve together and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, 2 and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal. 3 And he said to them, “Take nothing for your journey, no staff, nor bag, nor bread, nor money; and do not have two tunics. 4 And whatever house you enter, stay there, and from there depart. 5 And wherever they do not receive you, when you leave that town shake off the dust from your feet as a testimony against them.” 6 And they departed and went through the villages, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere. – Luke 9:1-6 (ESV)
I once left my wallet at my mom’s and practically freaked out. Not because of the missing billfold, but the 40 minutes I just added to our already 10 hour trip in order to turn around and retrieve it. (You have to make good time when you travel.)
When I’m trying to wedge a pontoon boat into the open hatch of my van, I’m thinking, “Preparedness!” And here is Jesus, sending the twelve disciples out into the world with nothing but the clothes on their back. No change of outfit. No toll money. No AAA cards. No snacks. No nothing.
The lesson on faith is an obvious one. But putting it into practice for most of us in the western world is another story. I believe the point of this particular lesson goes beyond trusting God (although that is a vital component here: trust God for everything, not your wallet or your own abilities).
Trust and humility truly go hand-in-hand. If we come strolling into town dragging along a ton of luggage, dressed to the nines and talking a big talk about Jesus, how genuine will we come across? How humble will we really be?
When we’re traveling with Jesus, humility is a vital point. If we as Christians are not humble at heart, we blow it. We cannot love if we are not humble. We cannot reach people who feel that we are (or think we are) above them. We cannot risk the temptation of wanting to be served. We have to have a genuine heart of trust in God, humility and love.
Jesus wants to pull us out of our comfort zones. He wants us to put our trust – fully, wholly, completely – in Him. Not our net worth. Not our jobs. Not our own abilities. He wants us to humble ourselves, give and accept kindness with gratitude, and love one another. What we truly need for our life’s journey cannot be earned. It is a gift from God. Trust Him and go.