Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Day 31 of Lent, Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Today's Reading: Luke 18:18-43

I come from a creative family.  Growing up, we would often play games that my dad made up.  The only trouble with a creative mind is that they are always tinkering.  He would sometimes get bored with the game and want to switch up the rules.  It was usually just when the rest of us were getting settled into the game.

One thing that seems pretty universal is that we all want to know the rules.  Most people thrive if they are given clear expectations.  It is tiresome to live with a moody person because you never know if he or she will be up or down.  How will they respond to us today?  Or even this minute?

The rich man who comes to Jesus seems to want to know the rules.  He wants to know what is expected of him for eternal life.  Jesus shares this with him and he may smugly answer that he's got it all together.  Except he hasn't.

Jesus starts out with some of the 10 Commandments which the man has done.  But he doesn't explicitly mention "have no other gods before me" or "don't bow down to any idols." Instead, Jesus asks him to sell his possessions and to follow him as a disciple.

James and John gave up their fishing profession - the family business - to follow Jesus. They must have been relatively well-off in their culture.

But this man can't part with his things.

The idea of a rich man struggling to enter heaven would be another reversal in Jesus' day; along with the Messiah suffering and dying.  Isn't he supposed to conquer our enemies?

Blind Man's Bluff by Fragonard.
Jesus tries to take the blindfold off the rich
man's eyes as well as the disciples'.  A lot
of the time I may not let him get near mine either.
To top it off, Jesus heals a blind man who then begins to follow him.  He correctly identifies Jesus as the Messiah (son of David).  Maybe he sees better than any of them.

This causes me to ask the question, "What blind spots do I have in my faith?"

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