“Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”
Mark chapter 10 verse 21
Beloved one, let me remind you today: Jesus is better.
Jesus is better.
That sentence could be the end of this short article.
Say with me - Jesus is better than…
Everything I am holding on to right now that’s hindering me from walking in wholehearted obedience to God.
Jesus is better than…
My child, my addiction to pornography, affirmation from persons, my boyfriend, my girlfriend, my spouse, my career, worldly success, my close friends, alcohol, weed, my job, my lifestyle…my sin.
Jesus is better.
Today, if you hear His voice…harden not your heart.
From time to time, we hear the call of God, (sometimes very clearly and painfully), to abandon all and follow Him. However, when we hear that beautiful voice and feel the sharpness of the conviction of the Holy Spirit, we sometimes experience a deep sadness, because oftentimes we conclude in our hearts that the thing Jesus may be requiring us to do in order to follow him is too hard. Whatever he may be asking us to turn from is too precious, and if we’re honest, what we’re really thinking in that moment is that…Jesus isn’t as good in comparison.
Dear friends… that is a lie. Jesus isn’t just “as good” as whatever we’re grasping to for peace, joy, pleasure, meaning and safety - He is infinitely better.
Augustine said it best – ‘our souls are restless until they find their rest in Him.’ We were made for God. It is in Him that we truly experience all the goodness we desire.
Jesus once encountered a young rich ruler who had it all, except peace. The young man knew of God, and did his part to be a “good person” and follow the law for the most part, but there was something more he knew existed that He couldn’t put his finger on, until he found it. That “it” wasn’t an it - but a “who”, and the “who”, was Jesus. In the light of the face of Jesus he saw all he had ever longed for, the culmination of a lifetime of yearning, itching and searching. He was prepared to follow this man wherever he went and do anything He asked…almost.
Jesus, upon encountering the young man, looked at him and loved him, seeing in him the weariness of a life of seeking and the pain of an empty soul; he told him to sell all he had and follow him.
Upon hearing this, the young man’s heart sank…because his wealth was very great, he turned away from the pursuit of God. Jesus, he figured, was asking too much.
But was He?
True treasure is found in knowing Jesus
He is no fool who gives up what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.
Anything given up for Jesus is not a loss. Like Paul, we can regard these things as dung in comparison to the excellence of knowing Him.
Jesus is the kindest, most beautiful, generous, faithful, fascinating man in all of history. Whatever we “give up” to follow Him, we could never keep any way. Turn to Him and experience the true riches of life- discover the real pleasures and preciousness that our dearest moment on earth is but a shadow of (only a faint hint!). Lock eyes with the God whose eyes burn with desire for you, and know that He is better! He is the treasure in the field that you can sell everything to purchase. It’s not a scam. He really is better.
I imagine all of heaven looks over the balcony from time to time and whispers, “If [insert your name], only knew just how much better Hse is…” Best of all, He sees our sacrifice and takes note!
In Mark chapter 10 verse 30-31, Jesus, responding to the sad decision of the young man told his disciples: “Truly I tell you,” Jesus replied, “no one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel 30 will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age: homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields—along with persecutions—and in the age to come eternal life. 31 But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”
Consider the cost of following Jesus, realise that He is better than and worth it all, and follow him anyway.
Whoever seeks to preserve his life in this age will lose it, but whoever lays it down (along with its desires, affections, goals and idols), for Jesus’ sake, will find it - and it will never be taken away.
Jesus is better.
Francesca Tavares (West Indies) is a daughter, sister, friend, avid reader, attorney-at-law, and porridge connoisseur. She enjoys Jesus and fulfilling His purposes for her life on Earth.