Moving Truths

Mark 10:21-23 Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

At this the man’s face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth.

Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God!”

We had a moving sale over the weekend. While we had hoped to be down to much less furniture than when the weekend began, it seemed nobody was in the market for what we were selling. So our house is still furnished. Not exactly a bad thing- I was wondering how the whole “no kitchen table” thing was going to work, for three to four more weeks. As we went through the weekend, I thought a lot about the situations people find themselves in, that require them to sell much (or all) that they have.

I think of people who are forced to sell all they own, to pay for something unforeseen, or as a consequence of foolish financial choices. How hard that must be- to have it all taken away.

Then there are the saints among us, who willingly and completely shed all these material trappings, to go overseas, or work with those less privileged, devoting their entire lives and incomes to ministry.

I don’t think Jesus calls every one of us to do the latter, to get rid of everything. The above verses are challenging, nonetheless. We are combining households with Luke’s mom, so letting go of stuff we won’t be needing anyway isn’t going to be difficult. Putting out our furniture in a yard sale and skimming down on our material goods doesn’t make our family feel pinched in any way. We have “much wealth” as Americans. It is humbling to realize how little we do ever suffer, or lack anything. Mulling all this over last weekend has given me a renewed focus on keeping things simple, in case the call ever does come to strip down to barer bones. My hope is that I am never too surrounded by my wealth to hear Jesus’ plea in the poor around me. How truly pointless this life would be if I, like this man, “went away sad”.

2 Replies to “Moving Truths”

  1. This is beautiful. I have always admired your clutterless ways. 🙂 I am happy to hear you are combining households with Carol!

  2. “O God, I beg two favors from You before I die. First, let me never tell a lie. Second, give me neither poverty nor riches! Give me just enough to satisfy my needs. For if I grow rich, I may deny you and say, “Who is the Lord?” And if I am too poor, I may steal and thus insult God’s holy name.” – Proverbs 30:7-9

    This verse meant a lot to me growing up & has been our prayer in married life. The scenarios pretty much sum up American culture on both ends. The rich deny their need for God, & there are “poor” who shamelessly steal by begging for handouts out of laziness.

    Keith & I LOVED our lack of “stuff” in Korea. It is a constant fight in this country to get rid of STUFF!! It takes over! What kills me is, it seems to be what drives so many people around here – to accumulate MORE!!!! Satan sure knows how to twist a mind, huh?

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