“Jesus looked at him and loved him. He told him, ‘You’re still missing one thing. Sell everything you have. Give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then follow me!’” (Mark 10:21, GW).
I want you to see something here. Jesus looked at this young man and loved him… without any life change happening. Many of us would expect Jesus to be full of positive emotions towards him after he surrendered all to God. But that’s not what we have here. Instead, we have a life controlled by the love of money… and the Savior brimming over with love for the soul ensnared therein.
Jesus looked at this man, and He saw right to the heart of the matter. He saw a heart that worshipped at the altar of Mammon. He saw a heart that – in spite of upkeeping an appearance of righteousness – did not truly have God on the throne. He saw a ruler whose riches owned him. Jesus was moved with overflowing compassion, desiring to see him free to run in the path of God’s commands. He gently gave the young man the difficult answer that he needed to hear.
When He did so, His instructions for change were entirely free of reproach. They contained not even a hint of condemnation. They flowed from Jesus heart saturated with love alone.
This is how Jesus deals with each one of us, too. He looks at us and sees right to our hearts. If there is anything there competing with our First Love, He gently puts His finger on it. He longs to see us free. Brimming over with love for us, He tenderly calls us to surrender.
If we will give Him our “Yes,” the liberty awaiting us is far more glorious than we could ever imagine…
God asked Abraham for Isaac. He asked this rich young ruler for all of his wealth. He asks anyone wanting to follow Him to lay down our lives daily. Why, do you think, is He so insistent on having everything?