The Lord now chose seventy-two other disciples and sent them on ahead in pairs to all the towns and villages he planned to visit. - Luke 10:1
Jesus had spent a very frustrating time with his twelve specially chosen men. If I had been Jesus, I would not have felt like choosing another seventy-two! If the twelve represented the best, Jesus must have worried about the new recruits! But the Lord worked with raw material, and he never gave up!
When I am training others to go out and serve God, I gain help from the Lord’s example. He went right ahead choosing people to do his work, trusting them with ministry, and dealing with their failures. After the twelve had failed, disappointed, and frustrated him, the seventy-two returned rejoicing! “Lord,” they said, “even the demons obey us when we use your name!” (Luke 10:17).
Fancy the seventy-two doing better than the twelve! That must have been a humbling experience for Jesus’ closest disciples. I wonder how they handled that! Can you handle someone else’s success? When a younger Christian succeeds where you have failed, can you rejoice?
Jesus was delighted! He said, “O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, thank you for hiding the truth from those who think themselves so wise and clever, and for revealing it to the childlike. Yes, Father, it pleased you to do it this way” (Luke 10:21). New recruits should delight us. It’s the old recruits that can give us a hard time. Old or young, we need to remember we are part of Jesus’ army. If we would only stop fighting each other, we may get around to winning the war!
For Further Study: Luke 10:1-16
Excerpted from The One Year Devotions for Women, Copyright ©2000 by Jill Briscoe. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers. All rights reserved.
For more from Jill Briscoe, please visit tellingthetruth.org.