You’ve likely heard or read the story. The rich young ruler who Jesus encounters who kept all the commands and did well except to sell all and follow Jesus. I’m sobered as I consider this story nearly on a daily basis. It’s a big part of my mindset to be self-supporting and I encourage those I’m co-laboring with in the Gospel to seek to be lay ministers of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, to provide for their families’ needs so that no one can say they were ministering Christ for the sake of personal, monetary gain.
The more our needs expand in our mind and our heart the more our lifestyle can distract us from the Lord’s call on us to abandon all and follow Him instead of our traditions and comforts and security blankets in life. A life of simply serving the lost and found in day-to-day disciple-making relationships requires less of an orientation around things and activities and instead an ever-increasing FOCUS by the power of God’s Spirit. This focus is upon our earthly PURPOSE:
ETERNALLY SIGNIFICANT CULTIVATION OF JESUS-ORIENTED RELATIONSHIPS!
This is the thought that this story keeps bringing me to: He went away… from JESUS! He had in that moment the opportunity to be ETERNALLY HAPPY… IN continual relationship with JESUS, and he chose to keep his traditions and belongings and routines and to be there and forever SAD.
My wife and I were talking together two days ago about how no one warns those showing interest in Jesus that an eternally significant encounter with Jesus is both the best and most difficult encounter they will ever have! When we face Jesus in our hearts, we too have the opportunity to “COME AND FOLLOW ME”or to go away sad.
We surrender all, Lord!
When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “One thing you still lack. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.”
But when he heard these things, he became very sad, for he was extremely rich.
Jesus, seeing that he had become sad, said, “How difficult it is for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God! – Luke 18:22-24