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. Mark 10:17-22
We’re confused by Jesus’ parable. Some interpret His words as a rebuke of wealth. Really it’s just a simple story. Move past Jesus’ illustration of money and look at the human heart. This isn’t a teaching moment about the perils of wealth, but of the affections of the heart. Jesus teaches there are many innocent and even good things that prohibit a fulfilling Christ followship. The deterrent for this young man was his wealth. But for either of us it is most likely something different all together. Jesus appealed for the man to release, let go and follow. Is there something deterring you from following Christ? Only you know, as you understand your own heart. What do you cherish? What do you hold dear? Is there anything in your embrace that’s preventing followship? What could it be you ask? I don’t know. Maybe it’s a relationship, habit, a way of thinking, attitude, job, possession, position, expectation, failure, dream, or an experience. There’s a lot to consider here. Life might be perfectly fine and you are following well. Or, maybe you’re experiencing emptiness or a lacking of the heart. Why do you think the young man went to see Jesus? He was doing all the right things, but there still was something missing. He’d performed the requirements Jesus spoke about and yet there was still something absent. Jesus spoke to his core that he was holding something back. Go and sell everything and give it away. Let go of that which competes for your affection. God is jealous and wants all of you – every last part of you. Call it demanding, but it’s actually freeing. So here’s the deal. Is there anything prohibiting a full surrender and following? Let go of that “thing” standing in the way. Holding on can’t compare to what’s in store when you let go. Don’t let your story be one of regret, but one of fulfillment. Come and follow Him.