And Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How difficult it will be for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!”  And the disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said to them again, “Children, how difficult it is to enter the kingdom of God!  It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.”  And they were exceedingly astonished, and said to him, “Then who can be saved?”  Jesus looked at them and said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.”  Peter began to say to him, “See, we have left everything and followed you.”  Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel,  who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life.  But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”
(Mark 10:17-31 ESV)
A rich man wanted to know what more he could do and when he discovered it was disheartened. I read that and I want to shake him.. asking him how hard could it be to give up his stuff.... and then I look at my own life and while I am by no means rich, it's still hard to give up my stuff.
Even as I sit I have a bag of shoes we do not need and I am restraining myself from ripping back into it to get out shoes I might be able to sell at a yard sale rather than just give things up to the Hospital Auxiliary to raise money for needed items at our local ... very community funded... hospital. Silliness isn't it? It's just old shoes...
1. There is simply not enough space in the house to keep it all.
2. It will go to a good cause.
3. I don't NEED it
4. Getting rid of it helps me better organize what we have and
5. that makes my hubby much happier. :)
All these reasons, and yet I struggle.
Seeing that struggle helps me to understand Jesus' words "It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.” (v25) It's hard to let go of our stuff and trust the promises of God. The promises that he will meet all our needs... even if we go through a time of persecution. He will give us brothers, sisters, houses, lands, and more...100-fold more than what we gave up.
Still hard. BUT going God's way isn't the easy way right? You know that right? Jesus tells us that too... Children, how difficult it is to enter the kingdom of God! (V.24) The Christian path isn't the easy path to follow.
It calls us to so much more. It stretches and pushes and pulls and calls to us to BE more. To follow Christ. To give up everything for his sake. To be holy, ad pure and righteous. To give things up for him cause he asks it of us. Consider this..he gave up his all for us...why should we be surprised that he asks the same from us?