Weekly Wisdoms for the week of December 29, 2008
In Mark 10:17-22, we read the story of a man who asked Jesus, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?" The man had followed all the commandments; however, Jesus told him, "One thing you lack. 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 told him that he lacked "one thing", which is implied to be a relationship with God. The man had followed the commandments; however, he didn't know God. He knew the laws, but not the God who made the laws. Interestingly, that "one thing" is exactly the same as what David wanted (see Psalm 27:4).
In order to inherit eternal life, the man needed a personal relationship with Christ. However, Jesus knew that the man's money was holding him back. When Jesus told him to "sell everything" for the Kingdom, the man went away -- he turned his back on a relationship with God.
The reason that he turned his back on a relationship with God was because he owned so much money that, really, his money owned him. That is, he loved his money more than he loved God. His face fell and he went away sad, because he didn't want to give up his money. So he picked money (wealth and worldly possessions) instead of a relationship with God.
In this man we clearly see the principle that where your treasure is, there your heart will be also (Matthew 6:21). His treasure (that is, what he valued) was his money; so, when Jesus asked for his heart, the man refused the offer, and, as a result, he went away sad.
Are you so attached to your money and possessions that they have become more valuable to you than God? Do you want money so much that it dictates how you use your time? If so, God requires that you put Him first, but in exchange you get the most valuable thing in the world -- a relationship with God. Therefore, examine your life and make sure that you're not so hungry to own more money that your money owns you.
Some Christians doubt that God can use them, because they don't have any great talents or skills. However, God doesn't necessarily look to use people with great talent; He examines the heart (see 1 Samuel 16:7).
Paul wrote, in 1 Corinthians 1:26-27, Brothers, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.
God often chooses to use lowly or seemingly foolish people so that He can show His greatness through them.
When you think you have it all together and have everything going in your favor, then you won't lean on God—you'll rely on your own strength. But if you know that you can't do something on your own, then you'll rely on God for strength—and that's when God can show His greatness.
Every single person has amazing potential to do great things for God. Regardless of your talents, you can do outstanding things for God. All God is looking for is people like David, who have a right heart that is open and available for God to work through.
If you find yourself broken and in obvious need of God's help, don't despair. God can use you anyway, because God is not necessarily looking for ability; He's looking for availability.
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