Image by Joshua Woroniecki from Pixabay
“Grace is ever present. The only thing necessary is that you surrender to it.” – Ramana Maharshi
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Now someone approached Jesus and said, “Teacher, what good must I do to gain eternal life?”
This scripture is from a passage titled “The Rich Young Man,” so the inference is that this “someone” asking Jesus for advice is a young wealthy man.
I’m no expert on what the original Aramaic words were that Jesus used, but in the translation we have into English, Jesus tells the man, “If you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments” (Matthew 19:17).
For Jesus, the question is about entering into eternal life now.
It can only ever be now.
When physical death comes, it will also be now.
Jesus knows that keeping the commandments will train you to let go of attachments and thus enter more fully into the present moment.
The now is where you can be aware of what’s actually real.
It’s the state of existence where you can enter into relationship with others and all that is.
But the young man wants to earn some future reward.
He’s trying to score points with God.
He’s trying to be perfect.
He tells Jesus he has observed the commandments, and then asks, “What do I still lack?”
Jesus, realizing the man is rich and likely attached to his possessions, then tells him, “If you wish to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me” (Matthew 19:21).
The scripture says with that, the man “went away sad, for he had many possessions” (Matthew 19:22).
We do not know what becomes of this man.
The point is, each of us needs to ask ourselves what we are attached to as far as power, prestige and possessions go?
The game-changer, however, is that God is love (1 John 4:8) and loves us unconditionally no matter what we do!
Eternal life is a gift — not a prize to be earned.
Power, prestige and possessions are not bad in and of themselves.
They can actually be used for great good.
But the crux is not-to-be-attached-to-them.
When you let go of striving for personal perfection or what Thomas Merton called your “personal salvation project,” then you are free to enter into life and experience the peace of God that surpasses all understanding (Philippians 4:7).
That happens now, in the letting go of attachments, in being present.
Listen to the song of the day “Make Your Way” on the Mercy Reigns album by clicking HERE.
Stream and/or purchase my songs on Amazon Music by clicking HERE.
Purchase my new book “Listen to Your Heart: A Daily Devotional of Calling, Purpose and New Life” on Amazon by clicking HERE.
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Remember: God loves you!