Today’s reading can be difficult to understand and apply. Think of it this way. Even though we have been equipped by the Holy Spirit to carry out the work of Jesus, this does not mean that it will always be smooth sailing. We may encounter opposition, even from those closest to us. But whatever the cause of our difficulties, Jesus wants us to keep a few things in mind. First of all, he assures us of God’s care. God cares even for sparrows, and we are worth more in His sight than sparrows.
Second, it will help if we have the right attitude towards difficulties and set back. We are disciples of a Jesus who laid down His life for us. Whatever might happen to us, no matter how painful, is simply an aspect off our following in His footsteps and thereby finding life.
Third, Jesus asks us to be mindful of other followers, particularly when they are facing difficulty. Even meeting their simplest needs serves Jesus.
Finally, “Do not be afraid.”
Jesus is always with us.
Taking up the cross and even losing one’s life for Jesus will be rewarded with everlasting life in the Kingdom.