Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of August 19, 2012
As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press,
here is a selection from our book of daily devotions,
"Living as the Beloved: One Day at a Time," by the
Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.
Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
meditation. We hope you will be blessed. Thank you
for forwarding this to your friends.
What must I do?
"Then someone came to him and said, 'Teacher,
what good deed must I do to have eternal life?'"
A wealthy person wants to know from Jesus what
he has to do to get eternal life. The Teacher
answered his question with a question, and the
two have a profound conversation. It does not
matter if we are rich or poor, old or young, male
or female, lesbian or gay or heterosexual. It is
a question we all have. What do we have to do to
get eternal life? How can we live forever?
Jesus and the wealthy man engage in respectful
conversation. You have to obey the commandments,
replied Jesus. Which ones, asks the Jewish
seeker. Jesus cites only six of the Ten
Commandments. Oh, the Jewish man exclaimed in
relief. I have done all those. What do I lack?
We are told that the rich man's face became very
sad when he heard the Teacher's answer. Jesus
bluntly told him to give all his possessions to
the poor. He would then have treasure in
heaven. This nameless, wealthy man then received
a personal invitation by Jesus to come and follow
him. The young man had great wealth and left
saddened. All his money could not buy, barter,
or bribe God into giving him eternal life.
Does this story mean we each must give away all
our possessions before following Jesus in
discipleship? Of course not! But perhaps there
are possessions, wealth, or relationships that we
worship and honor more than God in our
lives. What might they be? Are they hindering
our life with Jesus? What must we do for eternal
life? Salvation is free. Discipleship is a
lifetime of following Jesus. This includes how
we use our money.
Richard Foster wrote, "Our study of money leads
us to one inescapable conclusion: we who follow
Jesus Christ are called to a vow of simplicity.
This vow is not for the dedicated few but for
all. It is not an option to take or leave
depending on our personal preference. All who
name Christ as Lord and Savior are obliged to
follow what he says, and Jesus' call to
discipleship in money can best be summed up in
the single word simplicity. Simplicity seeks
to do justice to our Lord's many-faced teachings
about money light and dark, giving and
receiving, trust, contentment, and faith.
Simplicity means unity of heart and singleness
of purpose. We have only one desire; to obey
Christ in all things . . . we have only one
use for money: to advance his kingdom upon the
earth" (Richard J. Foster. "The Challenge of
the Disciplined Life: Christian Reflections on
Money, Sex, and Power," p. 71).
God, where are we in this story today? What does
this mean in our lives? Are we willing to follow
Jesus? Teach us how to use our money for you.
Help us give with generous hearts. Amen.
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
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