When Jesus heard this, he said to him,
“One thing you still lack.
Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor,
and you will have treasure in heaven;
and come, follow me.”
I’m trying to imagine what would be worse than Jesus telling you the one thing you lack. Maybe it would be edifying because you would know what it was and how to move forward. But probably it would be paralyzing, terrifying, life-defining, exposing, leaving you more vulnerable than ever before. To have God in Flesh seeing through you completely and verbalizing the one thing that stops you from being effective for the kingdom. That kind of intimate knowledge is absolutely terrifying, yet I think somewhere in me (and probably most people), that’s the kind of intimacy with which we hope someone knows us.
And best of all, Christ identifies that one thing that stops the rich young ruler from being a true disciple (his riches), but in his identification of that, Christ does not disqualify the man. No, he says, “Here’s the one thing you lack — freedom from material possessions, freedom from self, freedom from stuff. But by selling what you own, you will find freedom to follow me. So come!”
I’m not sure I want to pray it, but I feel like I have to know, what am I lacking? What one thing do I need to do so I can become a true disciple? I don’t know yet, but if I find out, I’ll let you know. And hopefully, I’ll be able to do what Christ asks to find freedom and follow him.