The men that had the work of caring for the pigs ran away. They went into town and told the people what happened. They told about all that happened with the pigs and with the men that had demons. Then the whole town went out to see Jesus. When the people saw Jesus, they begged him to leave their area.
— Matthew 8:33-34 NLT
The status quo is very powerful! We would rather things not change if they are going to threaten us or our livelihood, even though that change might mean something better for others. We would rather things not change when the change makes us look at things differently or forces us to treat others differently at our expense. We would rather things not change if we don't understand the change or the reason for the change. So we had better not be overly quick to pass judgment on the folks who asked Jesus to leave. Change makes most of us uncomfortable in one way or another. Jesus' goal, however, isn't merely change; he is about deliverance, blessing, and transformation. He wants us to be transformed by the Holy Spirit to become more like him. That is his goal; and if we seek him as Lord, his transformation in us will be every bit as dramatic over time as it was with the men who had demons. So the question is, do you want him to leave you alone or to leave you changed?
Righteous God, forgive me when I see the irritating things in others rather than their need for salvation. I know that your work of transformation needs to continue in me, so that I might live for you in today's world. Change my heart, my behavior, and my thoughts to be like my Savior. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.
Related Scripture Readings
- Colossians 1:28-29; Galatians 4:19
- Luke 6:40
- 2 Corinthians 3:18
About This Devotional
What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.
What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.
Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.