Thursday, March 24, 2016

Give Up

March 23 2016
Scripture: Luke 18:29-30 (ESV)

Give Up

"And He said to them, 'Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house or wife or brothers and sisters or parents or children, for the sake of the Kingdom of God, who will not receive many times more in this time, and in the age to come eternal life.'"

Jesus had just asked a rich man to give away his earthly wealth and follow Him, but he went away sad because he did not want to part with the many things he had. Jesus then states how nearly impossible it is for the rich to enter the Kingdom of God. His eager disciple Peter chimes in saying, "We gave up our homes and followed you." At first, the next verses looks like an oxymoron that Jesus promises more wealth in this life and the next. Many of Jesus' followers were dirt poor. They suffered beatings, ridicule, imprisonment, and some endured deaths similar to Christ. This doesn't look like, "many times more in this time", but Jesus' words are true nonetheless. Jesus was talking about heavenly treasures, not earthly, like the rich man's stuff. Outwardly, you may have the least, but when you leave behind earthly things for Christ, inwardly you experience the best thing there is: God's presence. So leaving behind the comfort of home and family can be sad, and you may miss it, like Peter, but that's okay, because you will be blessed for what you give up.

If I want to see eternal treasures grow in my life, I must be willing to give up my riches and comfort so that God's kingdom can greater impact my life. It is okay for me to miss the people I left behind, but God will surely bless me for it. A great way to view my possessions is that they were never mine to begin with. "Every good and perfect gift is from above" (James 1:17). My stuff is God's stuff and if He wants to use it for something else, then that's okay with me, because it's all His anyways.

"Lord Jesus, thank you that whenever I give up something good for You, You will bless me for it. Help me to view my stuff as Your stuff, because I know You gave it to me. Though I may never have millions in this life, I know I am rich in You! Amen."

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