Mark 10

Scripture

Mark 10: 21

Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”
 

Observation

Jesus is continuing his travels when one day he is stopped by a “rich young ruler.” He asks Jesus what he must do to inherit eternal life, to which Jesus gives a straightforward answer. However, the young man keeps pushing until Jesus then responds like this. Having accumulated a lot of wealth, the young man decides that he has too much to let go of and leaves crestfallen.
 

Understanding

I seem to be picking a theme with my SOUL journals lately. That is, I’m very drawn to the verses that highlight a test or a trial to experience the fullness of God. I picked one that talked about being refined two weeks ago, and today this one caught my eye. Here’s why: Jesus loves him. Well duh! Jesus loves everyone, but this was highlighted as important or else it wouldn’t be there. A lot of times we think that when we say “yes” to giving our life to God that it means every task He’ll have us do will be easy. But as this verse shows Jesus challenges the ones He loves. We aren’t guaranteed to have smooth sailing just because we signed up for a lifetime contract with our Creator. The “fine print” of the contract often highlights trials and tribulations, and challenges to test our heart and motives (which again Jesus shows us here).

Another side note that I think is important to point out: Jesus had already given His answer and the young man pushed even more. Here’s the lesson: when you ask for more of God and His wisdom, expect that you’ll have to leave old things behind, or that He is going to entrust you with difficult tasks. “One thing you lack,” is Jesus’ response. Sometimes the “one thing we lack” is not exposed right away because we are being trained and equip to face what we lack. I know it is a daunting thing to think about, but Jesus promises “treasure in heaven.” I’m pretty sure this outweighs any earthly item we could ever imagine.
 

Life Application

One translation says that young man walked away sad because “he’s was holding on tight to a lot of things, that he was not about to let go.” What are you holding onto that doesn’t serve you anymore? Trust that God will provide, and provide abundantly! Maybe it’s something material, but maybe it’s a toxic relationship, or a horrid habit. Whatever it may be it’s time to come and follow Jesus (no more hiding from Him). And remember: He challenges you because He loves you!

-Allison Khan