The Important Part

Wednesday, October 15, 2003

Mark 10:17,21,22 – As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. "Good teacher," he asked, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?" Jesus looked at him and loved him. "One thing you lack," he said. "Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me." At this, the man's face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth. (NIV)

The creative writing instructor in a class I attended recently stated, "If you want to learn to write, read the works of the great writers of the past."

One student responded, "Why read the works of the past? They are old-fashioned and out of date. Why not study the works of contemporary writers on the bestseller lists? These are the ones who are successful in today's world."

"Because," the instructor replied, "the old masters have stood the test of time. Fifty years from now, these writers on the bestseller lists, even though they have made millions, many of them will be forgotten. Their work will be like a vapour that drifted through and disappeared into the atmosphere."

"I don't mind being a vapour if I can make a million dollars," the youthful student replied. "I want to earn money, not win the Nobel Prize or be in the literature books of tomorrow."

Similarly, in today's Scripture, the rich young ruler walked away from the gates of eternal life sorrowfully, because he did not want to part with his money. He had lived a good life up to this point, but money was more important to him than the teachings of the old masters. It was more important than helping others and making the world a better place.

What kind of book are we interested in writing with our life: one that will make the world a better place, or one that will make a lot of money?

Prayer: Lord, help us to see beyond the dollar sign. You have given us talents to use for making Your world a better place. May we not walk away sadly, as the rich young ruler did, but seek to concentrate on the things that will lead to eternal life. Amen.

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Ivie Bozeman <>
Thomasville, Georgia, USA

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