Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Mark 10-12

Jesus is teaching us so much in Mark 10-12.  I love that Jesus teaches through loving and serving others.  He is not theoretical.  He lives what He preaches.  What He says is what He does.  His words have power.  His life is our example.  He is our connection to our Living God.

Last night after the kids were in bed and the house was quiet, I was folding laundry while my husband was going through piles of mail.  He was sorting the junk from the bills.  The more he opened, the more the bills kept piling; and before he knew it, he caught himself feeling a little stressed.  We are blessed.  We have all that we need and then some, don't get me wrong.  We are thankful.  But even so, with supporting a family of five, money gets tight from time to time for one reason or another.

And then, this morning I read the scripture in Mark 10:17-31 about the rich and the Kingdom of God.  A man asks Jesus what he must do to make sure he has eternal life.  The man is sad when Jesus tells Him to sell everything he has and come follow Him.  Jesus tells everyone how hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God.  I shared it with my husband, and said, "See honey.  It's a good thing we're broke.  God has us right where He wants us."

We laughed, but really there is more at the heart of what Jesus is saying here.  I don't think Jesus is saying we have to be poor to go to heaven.  I don't think Jesus thinks money is bad.  I think Jesus is giving us a "take notice" kind of caution.  He is telling us that wealth can distract us, mislead us, and keep us from following Him.  It's easy for money to become too important in our lives, displacing our true God-given purposes for being here.  The disciples wanted Jesus to explain this a little more when they asked Jesus who could be saved.  I think they were a little worried, like me.  But, Jesus tells us,

“With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”

There's good news here and bad news.  The bad news is, we are all in trouble because none of us are good enough to be saved by our own merits.  The good news is, God is in charge.  Whew!  God takes care of us.  He knows exactly who we are and what we need.  He knows money has nothing to do with nurturing our souls.  True wealth, true success comes from a deep and intimate relationship with Christ, the very one who is talking to us.  We can't let money get in the way of that.  God doesn't want us to depend on money but on Him, the only one who can save.  And there's more good news, if we follow Christ here and now, Jesus promises to bless us, both in this life and our eternal life.

29 “Truly I tell you, no one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel 30 will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age: homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields—along with persecutions—and in the age to come eternal life. 31 But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”

A prayer for today-

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank you for supplying all my needs.  You tell me not to worry, yet I worry.  Forgive me.  I pray you will help me depend on You.  Nurture my soul, fill my heart, and make me rich in Spirit.  I pray this same prayer for others who struggle with money.  Work in us a pure heart, acceptable in Your sight.

In the name of God the father, God the son, and God the Holy Spirit I pray,

May the Lord bless you and keep you,
*This post is part of A Mind-Maker-Upper's Everyday Reading Project.  Click here to read more.


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