You know that the first words you hear from someone make an immediate impression. Often we will remember the first impression even if we later forget most of what we heard. It is similar with the last words. Parting words are powerful and have a long lasting effect.
This morning as I prepared to leave for Hong Kong (at 2:30 A.M.); I started thinking about Jesus first and last words. Do you know what they are?
I should say I’m speaking specifically about His first and last words to His disciples. When He called His disciples He said, Come follow me and I will make you fishers of men. Mark 1:17 Surely He meant I will teach you to “catch”. Many of my fishing trips netted nothing and I don’t think He meant that; I’m positive He meant, Hang with me and I’ll teach you to do what I do help people find their way back to God.
Jesus book-ended His awesome life on this earth with these words, Go into all the earth and make disciples… teaching them to obey all I have commanded you. Matthew 28:18. Get the message? I think He is saying here is the end purpose of everything—it all starts and stops with making disciples. The middle part is example and illustration.
I love the middle part but we can’t get so caught up with the how that we miss the purpose. It is entirely possible to get so caught up in the tactics that the mission goes unfulfilled. What if we started and finished every day with the end in mind? I’m going to think on that more on this trip.
I appreciate your prayers. On this trip no news is good news. I know it is hard to raise interest, prayer support and funds without the details unless you remember what is first and last. I pray you will.