25 Feb John 6:66-69; Matthew 13:3-9

66 As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew and were not walking with Him anymore. 67 So Jesus said to the twelve, “You do not want to go away also, do you?” 68 Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. 69 We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God.”

Matthew 13:3-9

And He spoke many things to them in parables, saying, “Behold, the sower went out to sow; and as he sowed, some seeds fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate them up. Others fell on the rocky places, where they did not have much soil; and immediately they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil. But when the sun had risen, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. Others fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them out. And others fell on the good soil and *yielded a crop, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty. He who has ears, let him hear.”

It was one of the most touching things Jesus ever said. It was one of the most penetrating questions Jesus ever asked. “Do you want to leave me too?” The statement comes after Jesus had fed the 5,000. Jesus walked on water to the disciples and then tried to get away from the crowd, but they followed Him and when they caught up to Him, they received a hard sermon instead of some more soft bread. At the end of the sermon, this question is asked. It is probably the concern of most church pastors of every church congregation, because there are always people who go away. I suppose some get frustrated, and there is failure and guilt because everyone who comes ought to stay, shouldn’t they? Maybe reading this verse saves us from some pain. You see, if people would leave Jesus, I guess we can expect them to leave us. The parable of the sower also says, “Don’t be discouraged.” Not all seed that is sown germinates, not all seed that germinates lasts until harvest. There are those who turn away, but there will always be the wise to keep losses to a minimum. If you ask those who leave one year ago if they were going to leave, they would say never. So, the answer to the question will you walk away from your Christian family has to be more than merely verbal. Who are those who go away? Sometimes it is surprising. Why do so many people turn away? I think that question is a good one to meditate on. Remember, we grow most through the trials. The easy way is not often God’s will for our lives.