Illustrating my heart · Just a few words... · Uncategorized

With God All Things are Possible!

Matthew 19:16-30

And behold a man came up to him, saying, “Teacher, what good deed must I do to have eternal life?” And he said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? There is only one who is good. If you would enter life, keep the commandments.” He said to him, “Which ones?” And Jesus said, “You shall not murder. You shall not commit adultery. You shall not steal. You shall not bear false witness. Honor your father and mother. And you shall love your neighbor as yourself.” The young man said to him, “All these I have kept. What do I still lack?” Jesus said to him, “If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me. When the young man heard this he went away sorrowful, for he had great treasure.

And Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly, I say to you, only with difficulty will a rich person enter the kingdom of heaven. Again, I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.” When the disciples heard this they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?” But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Then Peter said in reply, “See, we have left everything and followed you. What then will we have?” Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you, in the new world, when the Son of Man will sit on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”

verseMatthew 19:26 says, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Now, I want you to close your eyes and say it with all your heart. Ready? Go for it.

Okay, now let us look at the context surrounding this verse. Matthew is sharing about a young rich man who approached Jesus and asked what good deed he needed to do to have eternal life. Now we all know that it is not our deeds that save us but our whole-hearted belief and faith in who Jesus is and what he accomplished for us. But let’s look a little further here. Jesus proceeds to cover several of the commandments; you shall not murder, steal, lie, cheat, disrespect your father or mother, and you shall love your neighbor as yourself. The young man replied that those were of no problem for him (most are probably not an issue for us as well) so what is he still lacking. And then Jesus replies with the biggest challenge for him…

“Go and sell all you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; come and follow me.”

Yikes!

Jesus just told this man to go home and sell everything he has worked so hard for and holds so dear. Sadly, the man turns away because he really loves all of his great possessions.

But I want to draw your eye to something. Did you see how at the end of that command, Jesus gives him an invitation. He says, “Come and follow me.” He is inviting this young man to come and share in the glorious blessings that he soon explains to Peter and the disciples, “And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold, and will inherit eternal life.”

So, now I want to ask you, what are you holding on to so dearly and so tightly that may be keeping you from the closeness you can have with Jesus.

Are you clinging to possessions and pursuing stuff?

Are you holding tightly to a lifestyle that pulls you away from your Savior?

Are you struggling with surrendering an addiction?

Are you pursuing the affections of someone else, either outside of a marriage or someone who may not be the best choice for you?

Are you always searching for the next best thing; best house, best job, best clothes, best technology, best gadgets, etc.?

Let me invite you to pause here, to close your eyes and ask Jesus to search your heart and reveal what is distracting you from him.

Now, let’s look through the rest of the passage.

And Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly, I say to you, only with difficulty will a rich person enter the kingdom of heaven. Again, I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.” When the disciples heard this they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?” But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Then Peter said in reply, “See, we have left everything and followed you. What then will we have?” Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you, in the new world, when the Son of Man will sit on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”

Jesus explains to his disciples that he knows how hard it is for a rich person to enter the kingdom of heaven. It would be easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle! And you may be thinking, “I am not a rich person, I can barely cover all my expenses each month!” But, let me tell you, you are rich. You have wealth that others all over the globe could only dream about. And if you have Jesus, you have all the wealth you could ever need.

Now, I would like to challenge you to insert yourself into the conversation between Jesus and the young rich man. Where Jesus asks him to go and sell all of his possessions, I want you to insert whatever God pressed on your heart a few minutes ago.

Are you reading, “________________, go and throw out those cigarettes/liquor bottles and divide that money between savings and tithes; and come, follow me.”

Or maybe, “_________________, turn your lustful thoughts over to me, pursue me and I will give you the desires of your heart; and come, follow me.”

Or you hear, “_____________, there is always going to be something shiny and new to distract you from my teachings, my kingdom, but none of it will ever compare to the riches I have in store for you; and come, follow me.”

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It is hard, I know. But do you see what Jesus says after he acknowledges how hard it is?! He says, “With man THIS is impossible, but with God ALL things are possible.”

Friend, did you hear that?! With God ALL things are possible!!

Allow me to encourage you to pray and seek his face. Go boldly before the throne of grace and ask God to empower you with his might so that you may be free from any strongholds that are keeping you from the closeness with Jesus. And I am praying with you!

Your faith has saved your, now let the Holy Spirit change you! Trust in God’s plan for you because I promise it will be far better than anything you can imagine. I am not saying it will be easy, Jesus tells us there will be difficulty. But, commit your ways to the Lord and let him bless you with the desires of you heart.

May the LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace. Numbers 6:24-26

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