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  • Writer's pictureRev. Kim Taylor

Pastor's Ponderings: Meandering through Mark 10:17-22 bible study (May 28, 2024)

May 29, 2024:  Tuesday Bible Study on the Gospel of Mark 10:17-22

May the lovingkindness of Jesus Christ fill your life each day, and through you, be offered to everyone you meet.

I hope that you had a wonderful holiday weekend, that your travels were safe, and that your homecoming was to rest and recuperate. On Memorial Day we took the boys to Tubac for lunch, and we were hopeful of being able to go to the state park there to tour the museum. If you haven't been to it, it is a must for understanding the history of our state, and its indigenous peoples.  Regrettably, it was not open on the holiday. We will try again another time.

Our reading from Mark 10 today is one which reveals to us the hope of God for each of our lives. Jesus reveals it through his comments to a rich young man. Obviously, from the way in which the young man rushed to Jesus' side, he was concerned for his own salvation, even though in the text we discover that he has been diligent about keeping the commandments to their letter. Evidently doing a better job than we tend to do in our lives, or perhaps you can make exactly the same claim to keeping the body of the commandments which addresses the ways in which we are called to live our lives in relationships with other people.  When he comes up to Jesus, rushing to Him, we find that the young man is in an extremely emotional state. Out of His concern for the young man, Jesus slows him down, asking the obvious questions about his faith. We are told that Jesus loves this young man. Christ already knows how he has been in his life, but in the exuberance of this moment with this wandering prophet, the young man really needs to calm down so that he can understand that there is even more to his journey than the respectability that he has already accomplished. For Jesus, the great teaching about loving others as you love yourself springs to life in this passage. The young man has done all of his keeping of the commandments for himself, and his concern about eternal life. But keeping the commandments is intended to be for others. It is the expression of the Love of God that enters the lives of others that this young man, and us, as well, that is really critical. It basically comes down to living sacrificially for others.  He had never considered this because his concern was for himself, not for others. And, when he is confronted about his wealth, he is unprepared to make that kind of sacrifice in his life. Now we need to understand that Jesus is requiring more of him that he is willing to do. What the young man cannot understand is that if he is doing all that Christ asks, he will never need to be worried about himself in his relationship with the LORD. This is why it is so important for us to steward God's provision in our lives, so that others may come to know His love. I know that we all fall short in this way in our relationship with Christ. Christ knows the generosity of our hearts. That is why it is so important to give sacrificially for world hunger, disaster relief, buying chicks and pigs and goats and cows to support the lives of people who need to be lifted up with resources to have a more fulfilling life, or to offer our help in times of need.  Recently in our home we experienced that same kind of sacrifice as members provided meals for us for several weeks as Melody got back on her feet after surgery. What an experience of Love! When we do these added acts of giving of our time, our talents, and our resources, we stop focusing on ourselves, and instead we move to show Christ's love, knowing it in our own lives already. Jesus did not focus on himself, his journey to the cross was for others, and that includes you and me. He has set the example of what our Father's hopes are for us in His creation. We are living our lives in such a way, that others may know Christ' love. We already have the greatest gift, Salvation. Our drive-in life is to be certain that others know the Christ of God through our generosity for our neighbors who may not know the love of Christ, and His Salvation.

With Love in Christ, Pastor Kim

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