I recently asked myself the question: What have I given up to follow Christ? Have I really paid anything for this “free gift of salvation?” There was a certain ruler who came to Jesus and asked Him the question, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” To which Jesus responded “You know the commandments: Do not commit adultery, do not murder, do not steal, do not give false testimony, honor your father and mother.”
The ruler stated he had kept those since he was a boy. Jesus told him “you still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” The ruler walked away “very sad” because he was a man of “great wealth.” He was unwilling to sell all he had on earth for the treasures and riches of heaven. What about you and me? What has Jesus asked us to get rid of in our life in order to follow Him? You see this rich ruler, cared more about keeping his riches than he did about following Christ and having eternal life.
During this same conversation, Peter speaks up and said “We have left all we had to follow you!” Jesus responds to Peter with “no one who has left home or wife or brothers or parents or children for the sake of the kingdom of God will fail to receive many times as much in this age and, in the age to come, eternal life.” What a promise! Nothing we give up in this life for the sake of the Kingdom can compare to the riches we receive now and in heaven! Tweet This
For most us, we have given up very little. Accepting Jesus’ free gift of eternal life, was nothing more than a routine prayer and then we went on with our lives, never really considering the cost of being a disciple of Jesus! But to follow Jesus, we must “sell” what is most dear to us. The thing or things that will keep us tied to the earthly and not the heavenly.
Is God asking you to sell everything you have and follow Him? Maybe, but maybe not. What He is doing, is asking you to examine your life and see what it is that is keeping you from following Him with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength! That may mean selling all and giving to the poor, only you and God know that. I personally know people who have done that. They gave up good jobs and careers, in order to follow the call of God on their life and they have never regretted it. But it may also be just giving up your self will or pride.
What is God asking you go “sell?” What are you holding on to that is keeping you from following Christ? Is He asking you to sell or get rid of your selfishness, pride, your fleshly desires? What do you need to give up today in order to follow Jesus and be a true disciple?