Christ Leads Us to Heaven…
Are you willing to give up everything you have to follow Christ?
You know the commandments: ‘You shall not kill; you shall not commit adultery; you shall not steal; you shall not bear false witness; you shall not defraud; honor your father and your mother.'”
He replied and said to him, “Teacher, all of these I have observed from my youth.”
Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said to him, “You are lacking in one thing. Go, sell what you have, and give to (the) poor and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.” At that statement his face fell, and he went away sad, for he had many possessions. -Mark 10:19-22, NAB
Over the past couple of days, we read in Mark 10:17-18 that God is good, and in Mark 10:19, the first step to eternal life is following the Ten Commandments. Today, we cover another important part of our journey to eternal life – letting go of everything and following Christ.
Between the various Christian denominations, we may differ in opinion on many things, but following Christ is something that we all share in common. Jesus’ role in our life, it seems, is the one thing we can all agree on.
Following the Ten Commandments is key to living a good life and being one of God’s children, but it will not bring us salvation. Our good works cannot and will not save us (only God’s grace can do that); however, not following the Ten Commandments can separate us from God because we are not following Christ as we should. That was Jesus’ point in this verse.
In Mark 10:17, the man had asked how to inherit eternal life. Jesus told him that following the Commandments was important, but Christ followed it up by saying that he must be willing to give up everything and follow Him. This upset the man. He struggled to let go of his earthly possessions. We, too, can struggle in this way. We may try to lead a good, Catholic life, but if our worldly desires still have a grip on us, they can begin to separate us from God.
Are you a good Catholic on Sunday, but all business the rest of the week? Do you give money to charity, but only what is left over after all of your other expenses? Is your time spent on your priorities first, and God’s second? If you can answer yes to any of these questions (and many of us can), then you may not be giving your all for Christ; you may not be following Him with all of your heart, all of your mind, all of your soul.
Being a true disciple of Christ means giving everything we have for Him – not holding back anything. Our money, our time, even our relationships must be given over to God. Christ will lead us to Heaven, if we let Him. Are you willing to give everything over to God and follow Him? Give up your treasures on earth, and treasures in Heaven will surely await you.