Matthew 19:21-22 – Jesus answered, "If you want to be perfect, go and sell your possessions and give to the poor and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come follow me." When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.
A few years ago I was on vacation with my family in a historical area in a Southern town in the United States. It was a nice area with beautiful homes from the early 1800's. I was out in front of the Bed and Breakfast where we were staying, packing up our truck for the return trip home. While I was loading the truck, a lady came up to me and asked me if I could help her. When I looked at her, I had the impression that she was homeless. Her clothes were very dirty and worn out and her hair was a mess. She told me that she had just arrived in town and was looking for her daughter. I told her I did not live there so I did not know how I could help her, but I did give her some money in hopes that it would help her. She looked at the money and then she thanked me and said, "God bless you." When she said this to me it sent a wave of feelings through my body. I wished I could have done more for her but I could not. But in the moment of helping her I had such a great feeling of serving others, instead of only thinking about myself.
In today's scripture, we see Jesus telling the rich young man to sell all he has and give to the poor. Does this mean we should all sell everything we own and give it away? I do not believe so, but in this particular case the young man loved his possessions more than God. If he was not willing to part with those possessions, then he could never have an intimate relationship with God. By putting others' needs before our wants we feel blessed. It is hard to explain sometimes but the feeling is great.
Prayer: Lord, your love for us is so great and yet sometimes we put that love on the back burner while we pursue our own wants and do not care for others' needs. May your love shine not only on us but through us so that your will may be done. Amen.