25 Now [a]large crowds were going along with Him; and He turned and said to them,
I teach grade 1 and September is both the most exciting (new students, new strategies, new things to try, new supplies, new start) and the most tiring (teaching new routines, training a new bunch of kids, over planning because a full day is the best way to avoid chaos). Undoubtably, Jesus had both of these, excitement and tiredness, at this point in His life too. Excitement at doing what He came to do and yet the daily physical human exhaustion that comes with a long to-do list and a short deadline.
On Friday night, I had the whole evening to myself. My husband and son had gone to a football game and my girls were at their youth group. Ahhhh...alone time. After a busy second week of school and the tiredness of September there was no other thing I felt like doing except being by myself and vegging out. It was not my desire to be in a large crowd and I pursued my needs.
Yet, Jesus did not turn the people away. Sure He often sought out time alone with God but his desire to reach people, to heal them, to lead them, to guide them overrode all else. Putting our own needs second is not easy. In fact, it is nearly impossible. Such is the cost of discipleship....
The extreme character of discipleship. The language is unmistakably absolute, definitive, severe, you might say. But this is not anyone speaking other than God Himself, God incarnate, the Lord Jesus Christ. He establishes the standards of discipleship. He determines the character of true repentance and saving faith. And it seems, when you study the words of Jesus, that instead of making it easy, He always seemed to make it hard. In fact, by most human assessments He makes it virtually impossible. We're good in our culture at making things easy. Simplify, simplify we're told. Make it as easy as possible. And this even finds its way into the church where we want to devise a gospel or a message that is easy to receive and easy to accept and easy to believe. This is not what Jesus did.
We live in a society that wants easy--fast--convenient--and something that requires minimal effort on our part. Our modern conveniences are supposed to make things easier and yet all these things seem to do is to convince us that we can do even more things in less time. The church can be also influence by society and led to give "consumers" what they want.
This is important to consider: