The past several months I've been reading through the book of Matthew, a biography of the Life of Jesus. The past couple of days I went through and summarized each chapter. Then chapter by chapter I used different colors to highlight what he was up to and here's what I came up with as a result. A disclaimer--this is not scientific or exhaustive or perfect, it's just my summary and I am by no means a Bible scholar!!!
When Jesus was born, he was headed to the Cross!! The cross was His primary purpose in Life. On His way to the cross He also...
- Talked about the Kingdom of God - 10x
- Modeled the Kingdom of God - healing the sick, raising the dead and meeting people where they were and meeting their needs - 17x
- Hung out with the disciples and trained them - 18x
- Opposed the religious leaders who were trying to trap him and trick him - 7x
My first thought is Jesus invited the disciples to follow Him and he poured out His life into them. They hung out together, not just one day a week for an hour. They lived life together. In our culture it's so easy to relegate our religious activities to a couple of hours a week, but this is NOT what Christ modeled. He modeled relationship NOT religion. As a matter of fact he had some pretty harsh things to say to the religious leaders!!
Parents, we follow this model, often without even realizing it. We hang out with our kids. We live with them. We eat with them. We work with them. We play with them. We vacation with them. In the process of living with them, what are we teaching them about the things of God? So many times we think it's the church's job to train our kids in spiritual matters. Let me pause and say that I value the church's role in spiritually training my kids. My kids have awesome children's leaders and awesome youth leaders. However, they don't live with church leaders, they live with me.
Which leads me to my next thought. Sure, Jesus talked about the kingdom of God, but He spent more time living out the kingdom of God. My actions speak louder than words with people. My actions speak louder than words with my kids.
Final Thought--If a biographer were write a biography of my life, what would he write? Chapter by chapter what would fill the pages? Am I living with purpose or aimlessly going from day to day?