Then they remembered his words… Joy, pain, frustration and elation – We respond to our feelings and they sometimes cause us to do things we wouldn’t ordinarily do, both good and not so good. Lord, your love within us supersedes all feelings and all things. Give us the time that we need to recover from those feelings, helping us to remember that your love is the ointment that soothes and the spice that seasons and preserves our relationship with you. Thank you God, for it is by your love that we seek to live and by your love we call others to life. It is all the treasure that we need.
I was at a very wealthy church for a meeting and noticed a rug amongst a pile of items that clearly looked like they had been donated perhaps from a member of this wealthy congregation. I recognized that my own church could really use the perfectly sized rug to cover an area of our carpet that had been badly damaged and financially we are not able to afford to replace. I was told that the items were part of an annual yard sale. So I inquired about the possibility of purchasing the rug, explaining why the church needed it. A few days later I was told that the organizers for the yard sale needed to have the rug appraised because people give things of great value to this already wealthy church all the time. In my mind it seemed perhaps that this wealthy church didn’t need the rug or the money, otherwise, why was it in a pile of items to be sold (as opposed to being set aside)? From a stewardship perspective, was this not an opportunity to fulfill Christ’s commandment? The parables of the widows mite and the rich fool were never so clear to me as it was at that very moment! For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also (Luke 12:13-21, 32-34). Lord help me to be a better steward of what already belongs to you, knowing that as I share my fullest tithe with the whole of God’s house, God’s grace and mercy will pour down an overflowing of blessings (Malachi 3:10).
Lent: Day 32 – If we only see Christ from a physical point of view, we will never fully understand who God is. A wealthy man walks up to Jesus and asks, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus answers, “Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone.” Jesus gives a physical answer to a physical question. From the story we know that the man has followed the law (Commandments) and yet he asks what else must he do. Perhaps, he recognizes that his soul is not fulfilled yet the wealthy inquirer becomes saddened when he is told to sell all that he has to achieve the one thing that he believes he doesn’t have. This story is more about our relationship with God than it is about sacrificing the physical things we possess. In this physical life, when we really want something for our selves or the people we love, we will make sacrifices. How much more are we willing to sacrifice, if our true desire is eternal life? What the wealthy man doesn’t realize is that the reward for living a righteous life is life itself and not the things we possess in it. What is the righteous life? Love God and love neighbor as self. Possessions come and go, but love endures forever.
Mark 10:17-31 ‘Truly I tell you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields, for my sake and for the sake of the good news, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this age—houses, brothers and sisters, mothers and children, and fields, with persecutions—and in the age to come eternal life.
2 Corinthians 3:7-18 Now if the ministry of death, chiseled in letters on stone tablets, came in glory… how much more will the ministry of the Spirit come in glory? …Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.