January 15, 2017
Luke 18:18-27 - A ruler asked [Jesus], "Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?" And Jesus said to him, "Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. You know the commandments: `Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honor your father and mother.'" And he said, "All these I have observed from my youth." And when Jesus heard it, 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." But when he heard this he became sad, for he was very rich. Jesus looking at him said, "How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God! For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God." Those who heard it said, "Then who can be saved?" But he said, "What is impossible with men is possible with God." (RSV)
Do you love the Lord? Or do you love your stuff? St. Cyril of Alexandria teaches us that The Lord is saying that we must abandon our attachment to the things of this earth – riches – before we can attach ourselves to Christ. Ouch! We love our stuff - it would be painful to break our attachment to it. Isn’t there any other way? No. We can choose to attach ourselves to our stuff or we can choose to attach ourselves Christ. Which one are you choosing with your life? You will give it all up when you die. Are you willing to give it all up now and live - even after you die?
The icon is of the Venerable Paul of Thebes (3rd Century Egypt) and Venerable John Calabytes the Hut-Dweller (5th Century Constantinople) (January 15th).