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[Jesus] said to another man, “Follow me.”

But he replied, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.”

Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”

Still another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say goodbye to my family.”

Jesus replied, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God” (Luke 9:59–62).

Food for Thought

I believe there is a direct connection between the unfinished work of God’s kingdom and our sense of feeling incomplete in our Christian faith because there is a connection between our story and God’s story. If we are not personally engaged in God’s great mission in the world, then we have missed the very thing he created us to do.

It makes sense when you think about it. If the Author of the universe created us to play a key role in his unfolding drama, but we have failed to find our place in that story, then of course we would feel incomplete.

It doesn’t have to be this way. God created each of us uniquely, and he created us for a purpose. But he doesn’t coerce us—he invites us. He offers meaning, fulfillment, and significance in our lives but always gives us the option to decline, and sadly, many do.

Simply stated:

  • God has invited you to join him in changing the world.
  • God has a dream for this world that Jesus called “the kingdom of God.”
  • God created you to play an important role in his kingdom vision.
  • You will never find your deepest purpose in life until you find your place in building God’s kingdom.

Listen carefully to these next few statements: You don’t have to go to the Congo or to Uzbekistan to change the world. You don’t have to be brilliant to change the world—or wealthy or influential or a spiritual giant. But you do have to say yes to the invitation. You do have to be available and willing to be used, and you may have to pay the price that comes with following Jesus. There will be some sacrifice involved—there always is.

Fundamentally, the Christian faith is a call to leave everything else behind, to follow our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and to join in the great mission of Christ in our world. It is a call to forsake all else and follow him. Only then will we become completed people—people living according to God’s deepest purpose for our lives.

Question for Reflection

Have you ever accepted Christ’s invitation to give your life to him and his mission? Why would that be worth doing if it involves sacrifice?


Jesus, I would rather follow you anywhere than feel lost and empty on my own. Thank you for loving me and wanting me. Please help me know what you want me to do and to do it.

Unfinished: Believing is Only the Beginning. Copyright © 2013 by World Vision.

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