Lastwordsofchrist Easter 1012X140

The Rich Young Ruler Devotional

Read This:

Now someone came up to him and said, “Teacher, what good thing must I do to gain eternal life?” He said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? There is only one who is good. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.” “Which ones?” he asked. Jesus replied, “Do not murder, donot commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, honor your father and mother, and love your neighbor as yourself.” The young man said to him, “I have wholeheartedly obeyed all these laws. What do I stilllack?” Jesus said to him, “If you wish to be perfect, go sell your possessionsand give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Thencome, follow me.” But when the young man heard this he went awaysorrowful, for he was very rich.
(Matthew 19:16-24, NET BIBLE)

Think: I don’t usually think of myself as very rich. I don’t have to look very far to find people who have nicer cars, bigger houses, and nicer clothes. But living in one of the wealthiest countries in the world has a way of messing up our perspective. The truth is, I’m loaded. Just the fact that I have a house, a car, and clothes (never mind how “nice” they are) puts me well ahead of most people in the world.

Money means almost everything in our world, just like it did back in Jesus’ day. There’s a sense of security and well being when we have enough in the bank and then some (just in case). Instead of trusting God to provide for us, we worry about what’s in the checking account. Instead of looking to God to find our worth and significance, we look at the sum of our earthly assets to define our place in the world.

God wants every part of us. Real life is found by living for him and allowing him to work through us. That’s what we were created to do and that is where we find true fulfillment. It should be no surprise when he asks us to give up the very things that hinder us from following him completely. At the end of the day, this is not our story. It is God’s story that we get to be a part of when allow him to work through our weaknesses, refining us into his image.

Part of me would like to think that Jesus was just making an example of this rich young man, that he doesn’t really ask that of people today. I mean, isn’t it irresponsible to sell everything we have and give it away? We’re supposed to be good stewards and there’s the future to think about! But the other part of me knows that God calls us to a life of sacrifice and reckless abandonment for his glory. There is no true freedom apart from that.

Ask: In regards to money, it can become very comfortable for us to slide into the Old Testament principle of giving ten percent. It's a nice neat number that often leaves some money left over for us to have fun with too. But what if God is asking you for more? 25, 50, 75? Would you be willing to do it? Or would you, like the rich guy in the video, say “ I can’t”, which really means, I won’t.

Pray: Ask God to show you where you can sacrifice more for his glory with your finances, your time, and any other area that’s hard for you to let go.