Thursday, April 7, 2022 | Mark 10:17-31
The desperation drives him. It creates a bit of a spectacle as he runs up to Jesus and throws himself down. “ What must I do?” It seems like such a gnawing question for this man. Something is missing, something is wrong, and I know it, and I can’t get out from under this aching sense that things are not right.
A clue is in the word “good”, and the teacher picks up on it right away – this fellow has a binary lens from which to see life, and it has him by the throat. “Why do you call me good?” He has a list of do’s and don’ts and he is awake enough to know that this is not enough, so I don’t suppose that the man’s claim to have kept the law and the commandments from childhood was a surprise. He is a doer just like me. He has kept them ALL, since childhood, yet here he is, troubled and aware that it has not been enough. He is ripe for the invitation to fall into a different way, to fall into the salvation that is coming through Christ.
Next. Jesus, the living God SEES HIM. Breathtaking. To be seen, to be known, to be undone by an enormous, driving compassion that would bring Jesus to give His life for this very man, for me. “One thing you lack, go, sell everything that you have, (empty yourself), and follow me”. How hard this is. This man cannot do it, I cannot do it. I just can’t, and it makes me weep, and it drives me to my knees. We really are all so very lost.
This story is not done, it is unfolding, just as it is for you and I. It is ok to go away sad for now. “Who then, can be saved?” Why, we can be! It is for this impossible thing that Jesus has come. We have a savior.
Be undone, be emptied, offer yourself. Give up on good.
Mark is a late 50’s guy who has been attending Trinity for several months with his wife Christine. They are North Siders with an empty nest – having raised 3 children. Mark is a physician in the IT department at AHN. He also works in Spiritual Direction, and as a provider in Recovery Medicine.