There are many, many people who say, “Family is number one!” For the most part they’re probably correct but is there ever a time when this isn’t true?
When you’re talking about Jesus you’re talking about priorities and if your family isn’t on the same page as you and Jesus there is going to be trouble. Did you know Jesus’ own family thought He was crazy? The scribes thought He was possessed by a demon. They did. In Mark 3 there was such a large crowd gathered around Jesus; He and His disciples couldn’t even eat. When His own family heard of this, they went out to take custody of Him; for they were saying, “He has lost His senses.” It seems His family thought He needed to be rescued because He had lost His mind. Has your family treated you like you have your priorities out of order or thought you were a bit touched in the head because of Jesus?
I think we would all agree that Jesus said some very startling things during His brief three year ministry. Perhaps some of His most alarming statements were about the family. In Matthew 10:34-39 He said, “Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I came to set a man against His father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man’s enemies will be the members of his household. He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me; and he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And He who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who has found his life will lose it, and he who has lost his life for My sake will find it.” Wow! If you aren’t seeing this in the Spirit you too might think Jesus was losing His mind wouldn’t you?
When it comes to Jesus we are forced to make a decision. He doesn’t give us the option to say, “Oh Jesus, He’s okay.” No! We have to see Him as number one even when it comes to our families. Of course there are times when the family sees what we’re doing and doesn’t think it is what Jesus is calling us to do so that’s when we have to be clear. There will be occasions when we are being called to decide between Jesus and our earthly family and it doesn’t always go well.
Another instance, as recorded in Matthew 12, when Jesus was teaching to crowds of people His mother and siblings wanted to speak with Him. Someone said to Him, “Behold, Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside seeking to speak to You. But Jesus said, “Who is My mother and who are my brothers?” And stretching out His hand toward His disciples, He said, “Behold My mother and My brothers! For whoever does the will of My Father who is in heaven, he is My brother and sister and mother.” According to Jesus our new Spirit bloodline trumps our natural, earthly bloodline.
If you think about it throughout the Old Testament things were no different. Even from the beginning, Cain and Abel had conflict over worship and what God required of them. Ishmael and Isaac’s whole life seemed to be marked by division over which was the promised son. Esau and Jacob had quite the rift over who would get the Father’s blessing. Joseph and his brothers had a contentious relationship, to say the least, all based on God’s call on Joseph’s life. So we see when it comes to living the life God has called us to live we are bound to have opposition even among our very own earthly family. When it comes right down to it those are the moments when we see who truly is Lord in our lives. Who are we going to bow down to? Are we going to do what we know God is calling us to do or are we going to take what seems like the less bumpy road of trying to please our families? As for me and my house we are going to serve the Lord!