Thursday, April 30, 2009

Diagnosis: Heart Problem

In Luke Chapter 18 a rich young ruler meets up with Jesus. Enthralled by Jesus' popularity and teachings, this rich young whipper snapper asks Jesus how he can get a slice of the heavenly pie, invest in some stocks of this heavenly venue, or get his name on the will like the others are doing. The Gospel is not clear as to how this young man had obtained his wealth but when I read between the lines I ask myself these questions. How did the guy get to be rich at such a young age? Did he start a lucrative business right out of trade school or synagogue? Did daddy leave him everything in his will? Was he born with a silver spoon in his mouth? There is always a story between the words "young" and "rich".
Jesus tells the over grown boy to do a simple thing - sell everything he has and give it to the poor. Pretty simple don't you think? Just put everything in your front yard with a sign that says' "FREE". Before noon it will all be gone. Since the fellow was wealthy he would've put out some really nice things, even silver and gold. The first takers of the day hit the jackpot! Can you imagine going to a garage sale like that?
We quickly learn the man had a heart problem - a problem of the heart. Letting go of what rightfully belonged to him could not be easy. Perhaps the wealth he possessed did come easily to him- a hand out or inheritance. To let it all go, to watch it slip right through his fingers, now that would not be easy.
Jesus tells us to do the very same thing today. Let go. Surrender all. Come to Him not clinging to anything. Be it wealth, or family, an unhealthy lifestyle, possessions both good and bad, God requires empty hands for us to receive from Him. When we truly search our hearts we find things that are precious and dear to us. Letting go can be the hardest thing in life to do. A clinched fist cannot grasp another possession, even if the other possession is much better.
Surrender, it's the key to true wealth.