On the Road: Disturb Us, Lord

Dr. Ray Pritchard
Dr. Ray Pritchard
2012 23 Mar

“Yet another said, ‘I will follow you, Lord, but let me first say farewell to those at my home.’ Jesus said to him, 'No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God’” (Luke 9:61-62).

Sometimes we need a splash of cold water to wake us up.
Sometimes we need to be shaken out of our complacency.
That’s what Jesus does as he meets three enthusiastic disciples while walking along a dusty road.

Each man has a reason why he can’t follow Jesus right now. One man is too glib, one man wants to wait, one man wants to say goodbye first. “But soon, Lord, soon we will follow you.” Jesus dismisses each excuse with a few well-chosen words.

This week a friend sent me a poem called “Disturb Us, Lord,” attributed to the famous explorer Sir Francis Drake in 1577. These words fit these three men, and all of us who intend to follow Jesus.

Disturb us, Lord, when
We are too pleased with ourselves,
When our dreams have come true
Because we dreamed too little,
When we arrived safely
Because we sailed too close to the shore.

Disturb us, Lord, when
With the abundance of things we possess
We have lost our thirst
For the waters of life;
Having fallen in love with life,
We have ceased to dream of eternity
And in our efforts to build a new earth,
We have allowed our vision
Of the new Heaven to dim.

Disturb us, Lord, to dare more boldly,
To venture on wilder seas
Where storms will show Your mastery;
Where losing sight of land,
We shall find the stars.

We ask you to push back
The horizons of our hopes;
And to push back the future
In strength, courage, hope, and love.

This we ask in the name of our Captain,
Who is Jesus Christ.

O Lord, disturb us if that’s what needs to happen to shake us free from our excuses so that we will dare to follow you gladly, freely, forever. Amen. 

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