Marriage counselors will detect certain things that, they feel, might be interfering in good marriages- for some, it may be men continuing to hang out with the boys, or women spending too much time and money at the stores. In our story today there is a rich young ruler who felt he was obeying the commandments, but struggling to have an intimate relationship with the Savior. Jesus identified the issue, and because this may still impact Christian relationships today, I believe we should meditate on the words of Jesus for our own benefit.
DATE WRITTEN: Wednesday, 2021-06-02
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL
BY: Ed Algreen
SCRIPTURE FROM: Mark 10:20-22
TRANSLATION: New Century Version (NCV)
BIBLE TEXT: 20 The man said, “Teacher, I have obeyed all these things since I was a boy.” 21 Jesus, looking at the man, loved him and said, “There is one more thing you need to do. Go and sell everything you have, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come and follow me.” 22 He was very sad to hear Jesus say this, and he left sorrowfully, because he was rich.
APPLICATION: For a young man who is really into hunting, he may be in shock over his wife feeling alone and unattended to, because his personal needs are being met with things outside of his marriage. The rich young ruler in our story today felt accomplished, because he was able to acquire everything he needed to meet the needs in his life, for there was no shortage of money. In fact, he had convinced himself that he was really a good person, because he always strived to obey the commands taught by His priest. But just as in our case today, Jesus was able to look right through this man’s ideals and wishes, and He was able to see that everything hinged on the idea that the man’s money could buy everything he needed or wanted, so he struggled with the idea of surrendering his life to the lordship of Jesus Christ. Friends, before you dismiss this devotional because you don’t have the money to ever feel like it could control you, let me first suggest that anything could really replace the thought that ‘money’ could disrupt our relationship with Jesus Christ. Elsewhere in the Bible, Jesus taught that we must become like a little child. That’s because a child has no money, or anything else that would disrupt, or distract, from an honest relationship with anyone. Imagine for a moment that you followed the instructions that Jesus gave to the rich young ruler. Can you begin to imagine how dependent you would be each day on the Savior – your Provider and giver of all good things in life? My friends, this is how Jesus wants us to be: Humble ourselves before Him; Recognize Him for who He is; Depend on Him as the giver of life itself and every good thing that we truly need; and to respond to Him in honor, praise and thanksgiving for every little thing in life. Are you there yet? Can you see how we are no different to the rich young ruler? Yes, it may not be because we are rich, but we have great parents who respond to every need we have; or we may have a spouse who has a great job; or a friend who looks out for us like a brother; etc, etc. What is it that distracts you from a deep, sincere, undivided relationship with the Master? I believe that Jesus is saying to us today, go and sell, or go and sever those ties, then come and bow at my feet for mercy, love and total dependence. Jesus loves us and longs to be our Savior and our Lord. Do you love Him and long to follow in sincere dependence of Him?
BLESSING(S) NOTED: Jesus identified the earthly things that the rich young ruler needed to separate from, but he encouraged him to ‘come then and follow Him’. In spite of who we were, God sees us in love and encourages us to come, follow Him! That’s unconditional love!
PRAYER: Thank You Lord for seeing us in our most sinful state, but still assuring us of Your love and inviting us to come and be Your guest. Lord, we are challenged by the things we have come to love in this world, and often we allow these things to blur our vision of You. The world needs to see an honest vision of You without any distraction from us. Please open our eyes and our hearts so that we might willingly sever our ties with anything that misrepresents You, and may our lives be so complete in You, so that You may accomplish Your work in and through us, as You see fit. We love You Lord, please help us to love You without distractions interfering in that commitment. AMEN!