Recently my wife and I finished the “The Chosen” series, that is, all the episodes that have been released to this point. If you haven’t yet watched “The Chosen” or even heard of it, I highly recommend it. It’s now on DVD, You Tube, and some cable channels. It is a well done telling of the life of Jesus, primarily of his public ministry with occasional scenes flashing back to his childhood. To this point three seasons have been released each consisting of approximately 8 to 10 episodes.
It’s in an easy-to-understand format and generally tracks accurately with the Bible. I think it does a great job of bringing to life the scriptures and in a very visual way allowing us, the viewers, to enter into and walk with Jesus as he gathered his apostles, encountered resistance from the Pharisees, performed miracles, taught not only his disciples but all people through his parables and sermons. All of these things are amazing and wonderful to hear again and to contemplate their meaning and the reasons why.
These are of course the accounts we are most familiar with. But I have truly enjoyed and been intrigued by the rest of the story. The depiction of the day-to-day life in and around Jesus as he over time gathered his flock and journeyed about sharing the “Good News”. Granted, the filmmakers took some liberties in developing these side stories because most of these things are not recorded in scripture. But it’s my understanding they did their research and have tried to piece together what things might have been like in Capernaum, Nazareth and Jerusalem during the time Jesus walked the earth.
It doesn’t so much matter whether these accounts are 100% accurate or not, but more about giving us a glimpse of some of the difficulties, stresses and doubts that Jesus’ disciples especially his Apostles probably had to endure and even personally wrestle with. We’ve all heard and read the stories of his apostles, who they were and how they were called. But, if you’re like me you maybe didn’t consider their personal stories. Some had spouses, many were fishermen, one a tax collector. Each made certain sacrifices whether it be family, livelihoods or even wealth. Imagine how they tried to balance this, managing their personal lives against this feeling that they needed to follow this ‘Man’ who claimed his father was none other than God. Even in their witnessing firsthand the amazing preaching and miracles they still had their doubts and uneasiness about this one called Jesus.
They questioned, doubted and wondered why they were called by Jesus to be one of the twelve. Given their past many felt guilty and unworthy. What does Jesus do? Shows them patience, kindness, peace, love and most importantly what faith is and how it can have an overwhelming impact on ones’ life, earthly and eternally. These are people who in a physically tangible way experienced Jesus and yet they had their personal struggles in how to handle a relationship with him.
Knowing these stories, isn’t it comforting to know that even the Apostles had the same kinds of feelings and struggles that many of us may experience in our lives today. Yet, just as with the Apostles, if we always come back to Jesus, maintain our faith, and share it we can find peace in the hope of the promises Jesus made. Think of it this way, YOU are one of “The Chosen”.