Have you ever ‘over-packed’ for a trip? For many years I traveled over 200 days each year. I used to carry two large suitcases on every business trip I took. One would be cram-packed with changes of clothes…suits, ties, etc. The other would be jammed with samples of everything I thought I might possibly need to show my clients.
One day it all changed. Technology and client expectations made it to where all I really need to show them was on my portable computer. My trips got shorter and my bags got lighter. When this first happened, I was slow to accept the change. I had become accustomed to the feeling that I had everything I needed with me. Now I felt less equipped…yet I had all I needed. Jesus sent His followers out and check out what they carried in their suitcases:
Mark 6: 7 And he called his twelve disciples together and began sending them out two by two, giving them authority to cast out evil* spirits.8 He told them to take nothing for their journey except a walking stick—no food, no traveler's bag, no money.*9 He allowed them to wear sandals but not to take a change of clothes...
First, what they didn’t have would have been tough. No Food? You must be kidding me? There wasn’t a McDonald’s on every corner and even if there had been he told them to take No Money! No change of clothes - for some guys this wouldn’t be too bad but ladies…what do you think about that? Jesus sent them out on mission without many of the materials that they (and you and I) would think were absolute necessities.
Now, what did He give them? Authority. Authority would be needed far above money or food or anything you and I might want to pack in our travelers bag. This Authority would allow them to successfully complete their mission. This Authority would help them seek out the ones who God would use to provide for them. This Authority was all they need. That was what they had to accept. Authority over Comfort. Mission over Material.
Sometimes God calls us into a Mission where we feel ill-equipped. How often is that feeling derived because of what we see with eyes that see problems instead of seeing the Power of God. Many Christian people live by a faithful saying that ‘If God calls you to it He will see you through it’. This is a great thought as long as you don’t confuse the materials for the mission.