Jordan Ministries
Embracing God's Promise of Abundance When Hardship Endures
What's Your One Thing?
by Jenny on July 30th, 2015

“If you want to be perfect, go and sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow Me.” Matthew 19:21

In Matthew 19, a man approaches Jesus and asks Jesus what he must do to inherit eternal life. Jesus tells the man he must follow God's commands. You know, do not murder. Do not commit adultery. Do not steal. Honor your father and mother (yep, that's a command). Love your neighbor as yourself.

"Great!" the man replies, "I've obeyed all those commandments. What else must I do?"

Jesus tells the man, "Go and sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor . . . then come, follow Me.” (Matthew 19:21) But the man drops his head, and then turns and walks away from Jesus. You see, though the man had learned to follow God's commands, there was still one thing--or in his case, many things--that the man loved more than God. And the man couldn't yet stand to part with his things.

I am the Rich Man described in Matthew 19. Not just because I live in a first-word country. Not just because I have many possessions. But because like the Rich Man, Jesus has asked one thing of me that I hesitate to give away--more of myself.

Hosea 6:6 reads, "I want you to show love, not offer sacrifices. I want you to know Me more than I want burnt offerings."

1 Samuel 15:22 reads, "What is more pleasing to the LORD: your burnt offerings and sacrifices or your obedience to His voice? Listen! Obedience is better than sacrifice, and submission is better than offering the fat of rams."

Mark 12:33 reads, "It is important to love Him with all my heart and all my understanding and all my strength, and to love my neighbor as myself. This is more important than to offer all of the burnt offerings and sacrifices required in the law."

Anyone else notice a theme here?

I follow God's commands (and that's not a claim of perfection but I have ceased from intentional sin, see 1 John 5:18). I read, indeed, study my Bible. I even teach Bible study. And while I fill my life with good practices such as these, God wants more than my sacrifices and offerings. God wants my heart.

God wants me to love the things He loves. He wants me to love the people He loves. He wants me to love my neighbor as myself, and I don't think it's a stretch to say He wants me to love my neighbor's kids as I love my own kids.

The disciples respond to Jesus' conversation with the Rich Man much like I respond when Jesus nudges me to do more, to give more than I want to give. I paraphrase, "How can anyone do all that God asks them to do?!?"

Jesus states the truth. "Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God, everything is possible." (Matthew 19:26)

It feels impossible to give away more of myself. My heart is too hard. I am too selfish with my time, my home, my family . . . with me. But with God, all things are possible. God can change my heart, and help me to love the things He loves, to love the people He loves.

What's your one thing? What's the one thing He would have you to give away to the poor in spirit? Will you join me in surrendering our selfish ways and hearts to Him?

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Crossing Your Jordan

I am a stay-at-home, homeschooling, Bible-teaching mom of six, and wife to my college sweetheart. I believe everyone can live a life of abundance through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and radical obedience to His Word.

Do you have a relationship with God through Christ? If not, I would consider it pure joy to tell you about God, why you need Him, and how to be reconciled to Him through Christ.

If you know Christ as your Savior, do you know how to follow Him as Lord? If, like me, life's challenges have caused you to question whether you truly want to follow God's plan for you, or you simply don't know how to recognize God's ways due to a lack of biblical literacy, I would love to teach you what I've come to know about God through His Word.

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