Saturday, August 25, 2018

Going the Second Mile

Jesus said, "Whoever shall force you to go one mile, go with him two" (Matt. 5:41). He was referring to the law where a Roman soldier could compel any Jew to carry his backpack for one mile. The pack weighed 66 pounds and if you refused to carry it you would be flogged.

Imagine being on your way to your destination when a Roman soldier orders you to carry his 66-pound pack. It would be hard to carry it for one mile but now Jesus tells you to carry it an extra mile. So now you must carry it two miles and then walk two miles back to your original starting point, which now makes four miles. (Remember, you're not driving a car.)

After carrying it for a mile the soldier says, "You can put it down now." You reply, "I’d like to carry it for another mile." The soldier says, "Why would you want to do that?" You answer, "Jesus told me to do this for you." Now you have an opportunity to share your faith with this Roman soldier as you walk that extra mile. By going above and beyond your expected duty, his heart opens to what you have to say. There's no telling how many Roman soldiers became Christians during that second mile.

We don't carry packs for soldiers anymore, so what does the second mile look like today? It’s doing more than what’s expected at your job, at home, and everything you do. When husbands and wives argue and fight, their hearts can become closed toward each other. But when they go out of their way to bless their spouse, their hearts open up to each other. Going the extra mile at your job might get you a promotion, but your motivation for doing extra is not to get credit. It's to please God.

Remember, it’s not the first mile where miracles occur. It’s the second mile.

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Making Life Count Ministries
P.O. Box 680174
Prattville, Alabama 36068-0174  Twitter: @KentCrockett