Jesus was continually calling people out, from a life of mediocre complacency, to a life of opulent significance.
He called the woman at the well out about her thirst, and challenged her to sample His living water. He called the man at the pool of Bethesda, who had been sick for thirty-eight years, out on his excuses. Sir, "Do you want to be made well?" He also called the ten men with leprosy out, to GET ENGAGED, and walk towards their healing.
Can you think of one person, in the Bible, Jesus encountered who wasn't convicted to come higher, up out of a life of mediocracy?
I was thinking, maybe the rich young man (Matthew 19:21)?
The one who couldn't part with his possessions and riches in order to "be perfected." Maybe, he was able to escape Jesus' calling to come higher, to leave his ordinary rich lifestyle, for an abundant lifestyle (John 10:10)?
Not so. The rich young man makes it clear that he too knew that with all his possessions and riches there was MORE LIFE that he was lacking and money couldn't buy, yet still, he wasn't willing to part with all his material success, to gain eternal success.
How do we know the rich young man was convicted? The Word says, "he went away grieving."
Grief is a normal human response to missing the mark, to settling for less than God intends for you to give, have or experience.
But, Jesus is so gracious.
He didn't badger the rich young man to follow him because he was the Son of God, or say condescending things to make him feel guilty about his decision, to not part with his possessions.
Instead, Jesus shared a message of grace. He acknowledged how hard it is to enter the kingdom of heaven, to choose His way over the world's way.
Can you relate to the rich young man?
Have you been asked to let go of something or someone, but you're not quite ready, so you keep trying to bargain with God about why you do what you do?
Remember, Jesus is so gracious, and wants you to willingly choose His way.
From experience, I can tell you this, the way the two brothers, Simon-Peter and Andrew, the fishermen, immediately dropped their nets and followed Jesus isn't everyone's experience (Matthew 4:18-20).
It takes time to drop your nets.
It takes time to discern God's voice, to let go what you swear you can't live without, to embrace your unique beauty and gifting. It all takes time.
I think Jesus was so chill in his interaction with the rich young man because he confidently knew what he was offering, His way, was unmatched.
This may seem like a ridiculous notion, but any offering, in this life, outside of connectedness with God is mediocre at its best.
In the next few months, I will be sharing opportunities for you to loosen up your nets, to get detangled from who or what has you caught up, and frustrated with yourself and your life.
Have you been secretly wanting to take a meaningful step in the right direction? Did anything shared here confirm what you already knew? Comment below.
Tiffany Wilson, M.Div -@tiffytalks