Blessed… Follow

A man approached him and said, “Teacher, what good thing must I do to have eternal life?” Jesus said, “Why do you ask me about what is good? There’s only one who is good. If you want to enter eternal life, keep the commandments.” The man said, “Which ones?” Then Jesus said, “Don’t commit murder. Don’t commit adultery. Don’t steal. Don’t give false testimony. Honor your father and mother, and love your neighbor as you love yourself.” The young man replied, “I’ve kept all these. What am I still missing?” Jesus said, “If you want to be complete, go, sell what you own, and give the money to the poor. Then you will have treasure in heaven. And come follow me.” But when the young man heard this, he went away saddened, because he had many possessions (Matthew 19:16-22, Common English Bible).

Jesus gave the rich young man four instructions. Follow the commandments, he assumed he had that one covered, I tend to doubt it. The second third and fourth are all tied together. Second, go, sell all you have. Third, give the money to the poor. Fourth, today’s reading, come and follow me.

We all follow something. The question each of us must answer is, what or who are we following. In the movie War Room, Liz, played by Priscilla Shirer, learns what it means to follow Jesus. In one scene of the movie Liz and Ms. Clara, played by, Karen Abercrombie, says that she and her husband were, “…too busy chasing their careers.” I have heard and seen people chasing their kids, their parents, their stuff and their friends. We follow the wrong people all too often when we let peer pressure dictate the things we should do with our lives.

There are two more things we often follow. One is power. For some in our society it is the thing of most importance to them. It can be insidious because it can hide itself well but if we are one to chase it, to follow it, it can lead us to some very dark places. The second one is money. I have heard it said that we follow the “golden calf.” When we follow and chase after money it can be our lone pursuit. We never have enough. There is always a need for more.

A couple of days ago I mentioned a book by James Moore, Have You Ever See a Hearse Pulling a Trailer. Money can be like that. We have stuff and want more stuff and let our stuff rule our lives. When we focus on money it can be the same way, money and the pursuit of money seems to control us and most everything we do.

In the end, money, or any of these other things can become our God. To follow Jesus means all these things take a back seat to our relationship with the Risen Christ. I don’t think having things is the problem. I don’t think having money is the problem. Following Jesus must be first, always.

What is something in your life that might be tempting to place ahead of your relationship with Jesus?

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Joy and Thankfulness,
Keith

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

Published by drjkbroyles

I love Mike Ashcraft's book, "My One Word." For the past nine years I have participated and encouraged others to participate to in the "My One Word" Challenge. My first word was discipline was my word the first year. Since then my word has been focus, sight, jungle, peace, concentration, serve, genuine and this year is fit. I seek to be fit for my health, my family, my church, my ministries. I seek to be fit in any are of my life where God might point to me. I also have a nickname, "Dr. B." When I was a public high school teacher, Dr. B. is what most of my students called me, at least in my presence. I am still called that by many people though I no longer teach in public schools. I am the author of "Average Joe: With an Extraordinary Story" (available on Amazon). The book fits into the genre of "Biblical Fiction" or "Christian Fiction" and features some of the Bible's lesser known characters. The name of my blog is, "Fork in the Road." Life is filled with forks in the road. It isn't a matter of if we encounter a fork in the road, but when will we and how many will we experience in a lifetime. I love to strum my guitar. I am not a great guitar player but I enjoy it. I also enjoy writing music. I get excited with I feel a new song emerging. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog, "Bishop" in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 30 years as a United Methodist pastor, serving churches all over east and southeast Texas, from just north of Tyler to south of Houston, from the Gulf Coast to east of Madisonville. I currently serve Perritte Memorial UMC in Nacogdoches. I spent one year in the classroom, teaching High School government, economics, psychology, and sociology. Cindy and I have been married for 43 years. We have two grown sons and six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. I enjoy preaching and all it's aspects from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading. I have dabble in drawing and "painting" with pastels as well as woodworking and woodcarving. My current projects are two ukuleles. I collect, repair and restore guitars too. I play the guitar (badly, but I still do) I also enjoy working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, TX, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. This blog started out as devotional writings. In August of 2020, I made a major change to the blog, switching to a daily theme format. Sunday Sermon-usually my manuscript sermon Miscellaneous Monday-misc. writing, poetry, ministry Tuesday Thoughts-Devotion Wed. with Wesleys-hist. & theol. of early Methodists TED Talk Thursday-Video & appl. in current theology Five for Friday-5 things I've seen & my thoughts Sing-Along Sat. - Usually a new song I have written I write, "Strumming a G-Chord with Dr.B." to get my thoughts onto something permanent. After all, they say, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. Seeking the Genuine, Keith Lufkin, Texas August 2020

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