I am reading a book by Mike Breen called “Building a Discipling Culture” and I wanted to give you guys a little taste of it and encourage you to buy it. Best book on discipleship I have read outside of Bonhoeffer.
While telling the story of Jesus’ first trip to Capernaum in His first week of ministry, and noting all that Jesus had done in the city. (Healed Peter’s mother-in-law, everyone else injured or sick in Capernaum as well, crowds so thick they gotta lower people through the roof and so on) Breen writes,
“before the sun came up, before it’s even dawn, Jesus gets up early and goes to a spot by himself to grab some time resting and talking with the Father. Apparently Peter and and the rest of the guys get up, can’t find Jesus (chances are pretty good more people have arrived at Peter’s in-laws place, waiting for Jesus to do more teaching and healing), so they go to find Him. They finally find Him and Peter, probably pretty excited about his second day (what might Jesus do for an encore?) saysm “So, ummm, yeah…..everybody is looking for you. Probably might want to make our way back to the house now.”
And amazingly, Jesus response is, “Hmmm, yeah, I don’t think so. Let’s leave we got other places to go.”
Now let’s be honest here. If we had started something and there were thousands of people who just showed up out of nowhere (on the first day!), wanting more and more of our time, if we had seen the things that Capernaum had seen the day before, it’s safe to assume we’d start a building campaign. A podcast. A newsletter. A twitter feed and a facebook page. A blog. A new website.
And Jesus leaves.
How did He know He was suppose to leave?
Well early in the morning, before dawn, he got up and spent time with His Father and then does something contrary to what seems like the reasonable course of action. When we think about it like this it is kind of baffling that He does this. What we see from Jesus is that success isn’t thousands of people and an ever-expanding church. Success is obedience to what the Father asks. Sometimes it comes with bigger churches, buildings and popularity, Often times it doesn’t. It’s about obedience, We don’t decide what the Father does.
I am only 3 chapters in and I am ready to whole-heartedly endorse the book. There is a link to Mike Breen’s blog in my blog roll at the bottom of the page. Go check it out. Good stuff!