Jesus said, “Whoever shall force you to go one mile, go with him two” (Matthew 5:41). He was referring to the law where a Roman soldier could compel any Jew to carry his backpack, weighing about 50 pounds, for one mile. If you refused to carry it, you would be flogged. Imagine being on your way to your destination when a Roman soldier orders you to carry his 50-pound pack. It would be hard enough to carry it for one mile, but now Jesus tells you to carry is an extra mile. So now you must carry it
two miles, and then walk two miles back to your original spot where he stopped you, which is four miles! (Remember, you’re walking under a heavy load, not driving a car.)
Let’s say you’ve carried the pack for a mile and the soldier says, “You can put it down now.” You reply, “I would really like to carry this for you for another mile.” The soldier curiously asks, “Why would you want to do that?” You answer, “Jesus told me to do this for you.” Now you have an opportunity to share your faith with this Roman soldier as you walk that extra mile. You’re going beyond natural duty, which opens his heart. There’s no telling how many Roman soldiers became Christians during that second mile.
We don’t carry packs for Roman soldiers anymore, but the principle remains the same – go the extra mile at your job, at home, and in your relationships. Jesus asks us to do many things that don’t make sense, but if you will just obey, you will begin to see Him act on your behalf. It’s in that second mile where the miracles happen!
If you are having marital problems, go the second mile and do something special for your spouse. Marriage problems will close the hearts of husbands and wives, but going the second mile will open up his or her heart again. The same is true for other relationships as well. Remember, miracles occur in the second mile.
What can you do today to go that extra mile for someone?