The first thing Jesus does is to send his workers out ahead of him in into the towns and villages. The key word here is “sent”; we as Christians are sent by Jesus into our communities to spread the “Good News.” This appears to me too be a command and not a request; we do not have an option. However, Jesus does not send us out alone. He sends us out in pairs; also he plans to follow behind us to complete the work that he sent us to start. Jesus tells us that there is a plentiful harvest waiting for us but that there are not many of us to bring in the harvest. So our work is cut out for us. We cannot do this task without God’s help.
After we are sent out, Jesus gives us other useful instructions. First he lets us know that the work will be hard, as we will be like lambs among wolves. He then tells us to travel light. We are to leave the things of this world behind and take our undivided faith in him. The only thing we need for this task is Jesus. Jesus also tells us to stay where we are accepted and to cure the sick, and tell them the kingdom of God is near. He further tells us that if we go where we are not accepted then we should shake the dust off; in other words, move on and do not dwell where the word is not received. It is only our job to spread and plant the seed, and it is God’s job to make it grow. We need to do what we do best and that is simply telling “our” story of how God has saved and blessed us.
We then learn in verses 17-20 that we will be successful in spite of ourselves. Jesus gives authority over all kinds of power and our enemy and nothing will hurt us. But he goes on to tell us not rejoice in this victory because the victory belongs to God. It is God that makes the word grow not us. We should not take pride in the success of the mission. Our mission is not to put people in the seats at our own church. It is to tell others the “Good News” of Jesus Christ.
The point here is, the work of God will get done with or without us; it is up to us to decide to be God’s hands, feet and voice in this world and in our community. Before you start your mission for God, take time to read and study theses verse again. It is a plan well worth following.