"There is no flesh that can dwell in the presence of God, save it be through the merits, and mercy, and grace of the Holy Messiah"
2 Nephi 2:8 (The Book of Mormon)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Turn Away From That Which Matters Least

In the 10th chapter of Mark we read the story of the Savior's interaction with a rich young man.
17- And when He (Jesus) was gone forth into the way, there came one running, and kneeled to him, and asked him, Good Master, What shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?
19- ... And Jesus said unto him...Thou knowest the commandments...
20-And he answered and said unto him, Master, all these have I observed from my youth.

Clearly, this is a young man who recognizes Christ as his Lord and Savior. He is eager and humble in his inquiry as he speaks of his desire to inherit eternal life. Jesus demonstrates that He also knows him and is aware of his obedience to the commandments.

21- Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross and follow me.

This is a poignant example of the clarifying quality of the Savior's light which we discussed last week. Christ doesn't just "look" at or "see" him... but rather, he beholds him, perceiving impurity within his soul, and loves him. He shines light on that imperfection and then extends the invitation to turn away from that which matters least and receive that which matters most. At this point the young man has a couple of options. Because the Lord chastens those whom He loves (see Rev 3:19) each of us have stood at, and will continue to have opportunities, to stand at these same cross-roads. Let's read on and see how he responded.

22-And he was sad at that saying, and went away and grieved: for he had great possessions.

Rather than receive the correction and move forward in and with the Savior... he was saddened at the required sacrifice. He demonstrated what he truly cherished as he walked away from the everlasting treasure, strength and love of Christ to retain his worldly goods. How could his soul not grieve?

What is it that the Savior invites you to turn away from so that you can more fully follow him?

In whom or what do your actions demonstrate that you trust?

Where do you spend your time and energy and what does this indicate about what you truly treasure?

I invite you to spend time in prayer and thought this week, seeking His loving correction. Ask Him to bless you with the strength and courage to overcome the weakness He will undoubtedly reveal to you. Move forward in faith, relying wholly on the merits of He who is mighty to save. Rejoice in His capacity to purify you and make you whole. Remember that you are here to become something greater than you currently are. This transformation requires that you love (verb) Him with all your might, mind and strength.


  1. Carey- I love your blog! I just wanted you to know that! I really like reading it during the week and be able to think about things that you've posted. I can feel your sweet spirit through the way you write! Love it!--Julianne


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