““Teacher,” the man replied, “I’ve obeyed all these commandments since I was young.” Looking at the man, Jesus felt genuine love for him. “There is still one thing you haven’t done,” he told him. “Go and sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.””Mark 10:20-21 NLT
If you are like me you have heard this story before many times. A young rich man meets Jesus and proceeds to ask him what it takes to get into heaven. Jesus know what the man is asking gives him a list of rules that man would understand, things he would have been taught as a child as what ” must be ” followed if one wanted to be “good” enough to get into heaven. This man hearing these things started to get excited, probably thinking himself a very good man as he had followed all these things. But in his heart, he knew something was missing or he wouldn’t have continued asking.
Jesus knowing that the man genuinely was wanting an answer we see that he felt genuine love for him, so he told him what was keeping him from what he was seeking. The money and riches he had in his life had become a god to him. Even though he kept following the rules he grew up with, livening a moral life, the money he held close in his life was what was keeping him apart from a true relationship with the Father. We all have had or have something in our lives that can keep us separated from the Fathers love. If your reading this you may have put it aside to follow, but you could still be holding it tight not willing to let it go.
Jesus gave this young man the way out, the way to become free and be the man he was called to be. It wasn’t a simple thing as the money had defined this man. He may have felt that if he did what he was asked to do he would lose his identity in the process. So not willing to give away what was close to his heart the man walked away head held in defiance or shame. Jesus gave the man the straight answer he was longing for, yet the message was to big a change for him to accept. Jesus is showing you what you must do with what you keep close to your heart.
Today you may be holding on to something that Jesus is asking you to give away. You may be the most moral person, but whatever you are holding on to maybe hindering who you are in a relationship with the Father. Are you willing to give it away and truly follow Jesus? He has a genuine love for you, not because he has to because he truly loves you.
Jesus, if there is something in my life that I am clinging to that is hindering my relationship with you I pray that you will reveal it to me. Maybe it is something you have shown me before and have ignored, push me to see that it is keeping me from moving forward. Let my life reflect who you are and the calling you have for me to reaching others with your love. The people around me matter to you, so they matter to me. Help me to reach them. Amen