Click this link to hear an audio version of the below text narrated by SOTH member Jerry Rhinehart: https://sothrichfield.podbean.com
Matthew 9:9-13 (NIV)
The Calling of Matthew
9 As Jesus went on from there, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax collector’s booth. “Follow me,” he told him, and Matthew got up and followed him. 10 While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew’s house, many tax collectors and sinners came and ate with him and his disciples. 11 When the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” 12 On hearing this, Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. 13 But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”
What was behind Matthew’s change in vocation?
Lord, in Matthew’s day and still today, much of our identity is wrapped up in what we do. I know that I struggled with that over the years. It’s hard to leave a job where you are comfortable, where you make money to support your family, even if You are uncomfortable with the values of the vocation or with the people in the company. I still wrestle with finding worth and value from what I do instead of based on who I am in You and from Your unconditional love for me. Forgive me Lord and help me. Even if I never worked another day, it would not change who I am to You and Your great and unconditional love for me. That is so very cool… That is what Matthew must have recognized when You called him to be a disciple of Yours. Your love has more value than any title, any salary, any occupation in the world because it is unconditional and it lasts for eternity. Lord, I want to be Your disciple too. Help me to show Your great love with those who do not know You, with those who have fallen away, those who are hurting, lonely and those who feel unworthy. Thank You for Your grace, mercy, love, and forgiveness. Praise You, Jesus. Amen.