Mark 10:17 As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. “Good teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
18 “Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. 19 You know the commandments: ‘Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, do not defraud, honor your father and mother.’”
20 “Teacher,” he declared, “all these I have kept since I was a boy.”
21 Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” 22 At this the man’s face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth.
This passage isn't just about money. The man asks what he has to do to be saved, and Jesus tells him it will cost whatever you aren't willing to give. That's why the man walked away so sad. I like to think he had a change of heart sometime later in his life and gave every dime of that money to the poor, but people are people, so I can't be too hopeful.
Some aren't willing to give our money, some aren't willing to give our time, some aren't willing to give our pain, or loneliness, some our prejudices. Whatever it is that you hold on to and will not give up for God, those things are your idols, your very own golden calves. Even our families. We must realize that our families are not our own, they are God's, given to us, by Him.
Mark 10:26 The disciples were even more amazed, and said to each other, “Who then can be saved?” 27 Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”
We inherit the kingdom through God's merit and sacrifice, not ours. But that does not excuse our unwillingness to give all you are to God.
My difficulty is with my loneliness and the many ways in the past I have chosen to bring myself comfort. I smoked for years and in time that cigarette became my best friend and I always thought, "Well I still have you." Alcohol was it for a time before I knew God. It helped me sleep, but also in excess was rotting my insides. Substances are an attractive way to cope, but become the most dangerous, thus why I had to come to Jesus on these things. Whatever the vice, they are all silly substitutes for the real deal. Jesus wants us to come to Him and rely on him for comfort, even if it means having to give up something that carries emotional bonds in your mind like cheap substitutes often do. Whatever it is, submit to God, rely on Him, and be free.
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