“Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.” – Matthew 10:37 NIV
If Jesus has ever made a scary statement, one that causes me to examine my heart to its very core, it has to be Matthew 10:37. Read the scripture referenced above again. Now that is a stunning statement, one that challenges me to fully comprehend. That is because I love my wife. I love my children. I love my grandchildren and parents and siblings. I even love my in-laws. Because of my deep love for my family, Jesus’ statement makes me very uncomfortable. In fact, it terrifies me.
Similar to God’s statement to Abraham, Jesus is saying that when it comes to our family members, Christ must be in first place, or else He will be in no place at all when it comes to our lives. As hard as that is to take in, Christ wants to make it clear that if we want to follow Christ, He must be first. The fact is that if we love anyone (or anything) more than Jesus, we are not worthy of Him. And if that’s not tough enough, He goes on and says that we must love Him more than we love our own life itself. Jesus sets up high expectations for His followers.
Am I willing to meet His expectations? I am, as tough as it is. How about you?