Thursday, January 16, 2014

365 Days with God - Day 27: In what do you trust?

I'm giving myself a challenge. Read the Bible each day for a whole year, following the ESV Study Guide 1-year plan. Each day, I will post whatever God has revealed to me in His Word, and how it is changing me. A friend of mine once said that nothing has changed her life as much as reading the bible each day - and I'm excited for how this will change me. Join me on an adventure into the heart of God - and day by day, we can learn more about who He is and what that means to us!

- Andy Catts

Day 27, January 16 2014
Readings: Psalm 26, Genesis 25, 1 Chronicles 29:22-30, Luke 18:1-30

We've spoken much lately of trust. Security. Hopefulness. Giving freely. God wants to build up these things in our hearts, but He wants them to be with a godly focus. Our security shouldn't be in earthly things. Our hope should rest in the only thing solid - Jesus, our giving should be done without reservation. And this looks different for all of us. But make no mistake, whoever you are, God is going to show you exactly what it is that you need to change. This is a blessing. And a challenge. Because most often what we need to change, is what we are putting our trust in.

And a ruler asked him, "Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" And Jesus said to him, "Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone. You know the commandments: 'Do not commit adultery, do not murder, do not steal, do not bear false witness, honor your father and mother." And he said, "All these I have kept from my youth." When Jesus heard this, he said to him, "One thing you still lack. Sell all you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven, and come, follow me."But when he heard these things, he became very sad, for he was extremely rich." (Luke 18:18-23)

This man asked a question, and received an invitation. Jesus offered him something that very few had the opportunity to say yes to: to follow Jesus. I think it was an offer to become a disciple. But only one thing remained in the way: the rich man's security in his money. Jesus didn't say that him being wealthy was a problem. Jesus didn't say that the money was bad, no, in fact, Jesus pushed for the money to be given to the poor. The money could be used for good things, for kingdom things.

The problem was that the rich young ruler trusted in his money. He came to Jesus because he had a nagging doubt, a persistent itch that told him that money, and following the commandments wasn't enough. So to put a check in the final box, he came to Jesus, asking what was left. And Jesus knew that it was trust.

Let's be honest, it's easy to feel like life is going well when you're rich. The stressors of life are often caused by not having enough, not knowing how you'll pay the bills, where you'll live, what you'll eat, or even how you'll have enough time to get it all done. When you're rich, there's no worry about where the next meal is coming from, or if you'll have a home, or even if you'll have enough time - you can always just hire someone to do it for you.

But if you have everything you need on earth, it's awfully hard to look up to heaven and recognize your need for God. Not impossible, but certainly difficult. Because what's driving you to your knees? What's causing you to cry out to God for help? And so, Jesus challenges the young ruler with this. He knows his weak spot. But he offers him a way out. A future with the King.

But the rich young ruler goes away sad - because he is unwilling to trust God more than he trusts his wealth. He's unwilling to put the Kingdom of God in front of his own kingdom on earth. What are you trusting in? What is Jesus calling you to lay at his feet in exchange for the opportunity to follow him? The opportunity to be sons and daughters of the King, unencumbered by the worries and concerns of this life?

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