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The Rich Young Man
There were the successes – that's what Peter called the days of miracles. The successes. And oh! how Peter glowed when cripples walked, when the blind could see, when the epileptic and the palsied grew calm and praised You.
But there were other days.
One of those other days the pain cut deep, although You understood Your Father's will and knew it would be a parable in Time. It hurt when the young man raised his eyes incredulously when You had said, "Sell all your goods."
Fishermen had left boats and nets and families, but this young man could not believe You would ask him to give up his home with all its priceless treasures.
His inheritance had been huge. He had inherited great wealth so he could buy the beautiful, the expensive artifacts of culture. He had inherited great compassion too, so gave generously to the poor.
But Lord! To be poor. To have to hunt for food, for bedding. To have to ask or beg – no longer order others for what he needed. He enjoyed soft clothes, not rough ones; he like finely fashioned sandals, not crude ones; he smiled when others complimented him on his good taste, lowered his eyes humbly when they mentioned the generous gifts of alms.
He did not want stale bread, rancid meat, wormed apples … when now all he had to do was kindly order a kindly servant to bring healthy food arranged attractively on the plate he had gathered in his travels.
It had cut deep when he raised his eyes incredulously and You knew in that instant that he could never relinquish the priceless treasures – or his own pride – to follow You. You knew in that instant that he could not become a servant since he enjoyed being called a generous master.
You knew in that instant that throughout his long rich life, he would hide his aching emptiness, knowing he had refused the only treasure that would have brought him Peace.
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