Read: Luke 10:17-24
Blessed are the eyes that see what you see! (v. 23)
When mission groups return, the participants often give a report to the congregation that sent them. Stories are shared of how much was done and how lives were changed. The joy of the journey is shared among all. In our reading today, when the 72 return, they exude joy: “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in your name!” (v. 17). Jesus was thrilled with them, but two things stand out about the joy he wanted them to see.
First, the ultimate joy is deeper than the power they witnessed. It’s that their “names are written in heaven” (v. 20). Who are any of us that we should be saved? “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are” (1 John 3:1). Once we belong in God’s family, everything else is icing on the cake, every victory and even every setback. In light of the eternal glory given to us, nothing compares.
Second, observe why Jesus was thankful. He thanked the Father that his plan was made known to ordinary people, “little children” (v. 21). Somehow, our participation in the mission of Jesus brings thankful joy to the triune God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Let that sink in. God could accomplish all his will without any of us, but in his eternal plan, he chooses to include ordinary folk like us, fill us with his Spirit, and send us on mission. Where will you go today?
As you pray, thank God for including you in his mission.
About the Author
Rev. Jon Opgenorth serves as president of Words of Hope. Previously, he served for 18 years as senior pastor at Trinity Reformed Church in Orange City, Iowa. In preparation for ministry, he received a BA in Religion from Northwestern College, and an MDiv from Fuller Theological Seminary.