Scripture: John 6:60-71 (NIV)
On hearing it, many of his disciples said, “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?” Aware that his disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, “Does this offend you? Then what if you see the Son of Man ascend to where he was before! The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life. Yet there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus had known from the beginning which of them did not believe and who would betray him. He went on to say, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has enabled them.” From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him. “You do not want to leave too, do you?” Jesus asked the Twelve. Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God.” Then Jesus replied, “Have I not chosen you, the Twelve? Yet one of you is a devil!” (He meant Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot, who, though one of the Twelve, was later to betray him.)
The life of a Jedi, while somewhat glamorous in appearance, wasn’t exactly the easiest of career choices. Infants were taken from their families before they ever knew their parents. They were discouraged from forming attachments to folks, especially those outside the Jedi order. They trained constantly. They had to master physical and spiritual disciplines. They never had a home of their own, save the Jedi temple. Many of us, after watching the exploits of Obi-Wan Kenobi or Luke Skywalker, say we would like to be Jedi, but if we were really given the opportunity, with all of its strife and difficulty, would we accept it?
The life of a disciple isn’t always much easier. Even with Jesus physically with them, some of those that followed Him decided that it was “too hard” and went back to their homes. They had been in the presence of the Creator, but their comfort took precedence. They may have wanted to follow Jesus, may have agreed with Him on many things, but they didn’t want to put in the work and the sacrifice that it took to be a true follower.
Sometimes we’re like that. We don’t mind giving of our extra. We don’t mind showing up on Sunday morning for an hour or so if we don’t have anything else going. It’s fine to share a Facebook post or pick up the Bible every once in a while or admire someone else who is doing a good work. Where are we, though, when the rubber meets the road? When the giving hurts? When the church needs extra hands? When the need is outside of our comfort zone?
I’ll admit, I’m terrible at it. What I know I can do, I do, but what I’m not sure I can do, I don’t. Stretching our faith sometimes means getting past our rationalizations and finding what God is calling us to do. As Padme told Anakin, “Sometimes we must let go of our pride and do what is requested of us.” It may not be easy, but neither was the road to Calvary. It seems unlikely your road will be harder than His. Be open to what He is calling you to do!