Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Jesus and Stuff

As I mentioned here, I've been listening to David Platt like crazy. I've nearly finished his "Radical" series now and Britt and I have realized just how much stuff we have and how much more money we could give for the sake of those who are in so much need.

The fact that I didn't notice this sort of thing sooner is troubling. How could I live so selfishly with my money? How can I justify spending so much money on food, drinks, and books, while people who can't read die of starvation and thirst? How come I don't more readily see myself as the Rich Young Ruler? How come I have so long glossed over the many Biblical passages that tell me that murderers, adulterers, and those who neglect the poor are all in the same boat?

What Platt constantly reminds me is this: none of the pleasures of this world are greater than relationship with Christ. It is, as he says, almost unreasonable to call it "sacrifice" when we give away our earthly possessions when we consider how much greater is the reward of Christ. As all of my Reformed heroes have taught me, so I am reminded: there is nothing in this world as good as knowing Jesus Christ. When compared with this, every other pleasure looks more and more like I'm getting ripped off.

And so, our Lord says, the kingdom of heaven is like a treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. Will I be the Rich Young Ruler who laments Jesus' call to sell my many possessions and so rejects him, or will I joyfully sell it for the greater treasure?

Lord, make me like the disciples who dropped their nets to follow you.