If you are like me, it has been decades since first learning about magnets and researching their marvelous capacity in school. I am challenged this week by the multitude of magnets we use daily.
A magnet is a material or object that produces a magnetic field. This magnetic field is invisible but is responsible for a force that pulls on other ferromagnetic materials and attracts or repels other magnets. I remember as a child my father bringing magnets and metal shavings in from the shop. Us children would watch in amazement witnessing the power of this magnetic pull and push.
Jesus had a “magnetic” attraction with those who were hungry for the true things of the Spirit. Why else would the disciples, multitudes and even accusers follow him to the remotest parts of that world?
Before they saw a miracle people followed without reservation. Long before any tangible evidence of success there were those
amazed with the authority in which He spoke,
clinging to His words,
rolling them over repeatedly in their minds and
absorbing them in their hearts because …
“he taught with real authority—
quite unlike their teachers of religious law”
Magnets attract opposites! Sinless Jesus attracted to Himself the weak and infirm, the despised and rejected, the lepers and blind, the broken and demon possessed.
Even a notorious thief hanging on an adjacent cross used his last life-moments to embrace Jesus becoming both believer and follower.
“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me;”
As the crowds of followers grew, so did the mass of critics. Magnets also repel! Jesus’ own family mistook him as crazy!
When his family heard about this,
they went to take charge of him, for they said, “He is out of his mind.”
Religious leaders felt threatened, confused and angered by His teaching and miracles. They were jealous of his popularity and following.
“What can we do?” they asked.
“This man is doing many miraculous signs.
If we let Him keep on doing this, everyone will believe in Him.”
Why didn’t Jesus apologized for either attracting large crowds or raising the anger of his opponents?
“Jesus knew that the Father had given him authority
over everything and that he had come from God
and would return to God.”
Jesus never had an identity crisis! He owned who He was, His purpose and calling. Neither attraction nor repulsion would influence the purpose of God in His life.
To make a magnet, all you have to do is encourage the magnetic domains in a piece of metal to point in the same direction. Placing another piece of metal adjacent to a magnet in alignment will over time also become magnetic.
Jesus excelled at creating in others the same capacity to attract every increasing numbers of followers into the Kingdom of God. They in turn brought other magnetic disciples into their full potential. First Jesus, then a few more, until finally millions upon millions are pointing the same direction, to the Father.
Jesus made it clear that all who follow Him would face similar experiences of acceptance and rejection.
“Blessed are you when people hate you,
when they exclude you and insult you
and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man.
Rejoice in that day and leap for joy,
Because great is your reward in heaven.”
“When” you face opposition, not “if”, rejoice! Rejoice? Yes, rejoice! It is evidence that you really are the “magnet” Christ has called you to be.
By striking a piece of metal repeatedly with a hammer you can also make a magnet. Oh, this doesn’t sound comfortable! But knowing how beneficial spiritual magnets are, worth the effort. If force is what it will take to align me to Jesus, I give my reluctant, “Yes!”
“Those who love their life in this world will lose it.
Those who care nothing for their life in this world will keep it for eternity.”
Magnets in many sizes and strengths are used in a variety of applications: medicine, science, industry, recreation, and technology to name a few. They are amazing devices found in credit cards, disk drives, MRI equipment, games, audio equipment and holding letters on the fridge. Each one has a specific purpose and design.
On our journey, may we align ourselves with the pattern of Christ:
“Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.”
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all
your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’;
and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.”
Whether these little human magnets attract or repel, that is in God’s hands. May we find peace in our calling and design as we love fully!
Let us be magnets of noble purpose! Your magnetic influence has the ability to pull others toward Jesus!