John said to Jesus, "Master, we saw someone using your name to cast out demons, but we told him to stop because he isn’t in our group." – Luke 9:49 (NLT)
You can tell a lot about a person by observing what threatens them. In the account above, we see that the disciples were threatened by a man who was casting out demons in Christ’s name. By all outward accounts, this was a good thing. Yet in their minds, there was a big problem: This man wasn’t one of them. This bothered them so much that they actually tried to stop him.
Watch how Christ responds: But Jesus said, "Don’t stop him! Anyone who is not against you is for you." (Luke 9:50 NLT)
In other words, "Take it easy. Don’t waste your time feeling threatened by people who aren’t even against you." Ouch!
This is a lesson that we all need to hear on a daily basis. How many times do we get caught up with what others might be doing? They aren’t directly opposing us, we just happen to dislike what they’re doing and how they’re doing it. It becomes a point of preoccupation for us, and before we know it, we’re defined by what we’re against instead of what we’re for.
Jesus would tell us what He told the twelve: Take it easy. Being a disciple of Christ doesn’t equate to being a crusading fault-finder who is threatened by everything that doesn’t fit in their box. In fact, if there’s anyone in this world who shouldn’t be threatened, it’s the person whose identity is securely grounded in Jesus Christ (Colossians 3:3).
If you find yourself being threatened by this person or that person, take it easy, because that’s not what a disciple does.