Thursday, February 9, 2017

Eye of the Needle

As Jesus was setting out on a journey, a man ran up and knelt before him, and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. You know the commandments: ‘You shall not murder; You shall not commit adultery; You shall not steal; You shall not bear false witness; You shall not defraud; Honor your father and mother.'” He said to him, “Teacher, I have kept all these since my youth.” Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said, “You lack one thing; go, sell what you own, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.” When he heard this, he was shocked and went away grieving, for he had many possessions.
Then Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How hard it will be for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!” And the disciples were perplexed at these words. But Jesus said to them again, “Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.” They were greatly astounded and said to one another, “Then who can be saved?” Jesus looked at them and said, “For mortals it is impossible, but not for God; for God all things are possible.”
Peter began to say to him, “Look, we have left everything and followed you.” Jesus said, “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. But many who are first will be last, and the last will be first." Mark 10:17-31 

Yesterday I say it a surgical waiting room for many long hours crocheting to keep my hands busy. I was waiting for my husband who had a procedure. His procedure was very quick and the doctor called me and said all went well, but then I had to wait almost three hours before I could see him. Somehow, that crochet hook in my hands became more clumsy and misguided as time went on. There was no one to call make the time go more quickly. I finally, exasperated with myself and waiting, spent some time praying and realized that although there might be no one present with me, there was a great crowd in heaven and dear friends across the planet praying as well.

Jesus is setting out on a journey. There was no resting for him. He was asked a hard question and gave a honest answer. His disciples were anxious with his answer, and probed further. Jesus wanted them to hear that the riches of this world are no great gift, but rather the willingness to give them away and to give ourselves as well, is the biggest blessings, the greatest gift. A life lived for God and for others is the richest on earth and in heaven. God invites us to be sacrificial in our living and our giving, so that we might know the abundant blessings from God.

Today, I ask God to help me move form selfish to sacrificial, from fear to letting go, from anxiety to trusting. May we live abundantly for God and one another as we give ourselves away for the present and future.

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