The Good News!
How many of you, like me, seem to operate on daily check lists? If we don’t, we feel we will not get anything accomplished. Our work demands checklists and back up checklists it seems. We are asked constantly, “did you get that done?” So, that becomes our lives in this world so we don’t fall short when the time comes for, yet another checklist..the work evaluation!
We carry this over into our family life and home management, don’t we? Admit, whether you write it down or not, we do it. To do lists and check lists seem to control us. It comes frightfully close to losing our souls if the checklist mentality carries over into our spiritual lives…which should be ALL of life. I not saying we shouldn’t be prepared, the Bible teaches us to be prepared and ready. But be ready when God changes us and our checklist.
Let’s read what Jesus says and how he looked right into the eyes of one who asked, “What must I do to get eternal life?” and see how He LOVED him with His response. Jesus nailed the man’s to do list to his heart and the man could not let go of it. Wow….see what you think…
Mark 10, The Message
To Enter God’s Kingdom
17 As he went out into the street, a man came running up, greeted him with great reverence, and asked, “Good Teacher, what must I do to get eternal life?”
18-19 Jesus said, “Why are you calling me good? No one is good, only God. You know the commandments: Don’t murder, don’t commit adultery, don’t steal, don’t lie, don’t cheat, honor your father and mother.”
20 He said, “Teacher, I have—from my youth—kept them all!”
21 Jesus looked him hard in the eye—and loved him! He said, “There’s one thing left: Go sell whatever you own and give it to the poor. All your wealth will then be heavenly wealth. And come follow me.”
22 The man’s face clouded over. This was the last thing he expected to hear, and he walked off with a heavy heart. He was holding on tight to a lot of things, and not about to let go.
23-25 Looking at his disciples, Jesus said, “Do you have any idea how difficult it is for people who ‘have it all’ to enter God’s kingdom?” The disciples couldn’t believe what they were hearing, but Jesus kept on: “You can’t imagine how difficult. I’d say it’s easier for a camel to go through a needle’s eye than for the rich to get into God’s kingdom.”
26 That set the disciples back on their heels. “Then who has any chance at all?” they asked.
27 Jesus was blunt: “No chance at all if you think you can pull it off by yourself. Every chance in the world if you let God do it.”
28 Peter tried another angle: “We left everything and followed you.”
29-31 Jesus said, “Mark my words, no one who sacrifices house, brothers, sisters, mother, father, children, land—whatever—because of me and the Message will lose out. They’ll get it all back, but multiplied many times in homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children, and land—but also in troubles. And then the bonus of eternal life! This is once again the Great Reversal: Many who are first will end up last, and the last first.”
Jesus is looking at us, “hard in the eye”–and loving us! How many of us want to tear up our check list and let it go? I do, I do! Let it go (temptation here to sing, but I won’t)! Seriously, let it go and let God direct us, guide us, teach us with every step. Go with the unforced rhythm of His love, mercy and grace. BE with Him, see what that is like, before doing anything. Being in the Kingdom of God is allowing Him to pry our tight fists from those things that are keeping us from entering and abiding with God…forever and ever, Amen.
Dear Heavenly Father, I give you my to do lists and my check lists of good and trade them for Your best. I give you my heart, mind and soul with love in my heart. I give you my life. All of it. I am letting go, again, this day. Thank you for this example of what we must do to BE with You forever.
Your loving, out of control child,
In Jesus Name, Amen