Love's Greatest Hits (week two) "Can't Buy Me Love"

· Intro: Repticon - Male gecko shows tail
· We all try to buy love (first date, dating, engagement)
· Not just money but with time, deeds
· We believe love is something to be earned or that love is a transaction.
· Ex. Beth and I during dating, engagement, and early years of marriage. I loved her by the book. Meaning I was trying my best to follow all the rules.
· Until one day I realized if our marriage was going to last, then I couldn’t love her strictly by rules anymore. Our marriage couldn’t be built me trying to earn her love.
· This whole idea of love and acceptance being something that can be earned or bought is not a modern day struggle.

Mark 10:17-22
As he went out into the street, a man came running up, greeted him with great reverence, and asked, “Good Teacher, what must I do to get eternal life?” Jesus said, “Why are you calling me good? No one is good, only God. You know the commandments: Don’t murder, don’t commit adultery, don’t steal, don’t lie, don’t cheat, honor your father and mother.” He said, “Teacher, I have—from my youth—kept them all!” Jesus looked him hard in the eye—and loved him! He said, “There’s one thing left: Go sell whatever you own and give it to the poor. All your wealth will then be heavenly wealth. And come follow me.” The man’s face clouded over. This was the last thing he expected to hear, and he walked off with a heavy heart. He was holding on tight to a lot of things, and not about to let go.

· On paper, this guy has it all. Great wealth & young.
· The rich young ruler was a good man, knew the law, and strived to obey it.
· At his core, this guy meant well, he longed for God’s love and acceptance but he was going about it all wrong.
· He had turned his relationship with Jesus into a transaction.
· If I do enough then God will love me. He will accept me.
· The ruler went away saddened and grieving was because he knew by Jesus request that he only could never do enough.
· He had done so much already and fell short.
· There was still more he had to do. One more thing.
· Do you recognize how exhausting that can be.
· Ex. Always doing everything for someone just have to have them tell you it’s not enough. More is needed.
· Just like the young ruler, we may be willing to do anything for God, but for all of us there is one thing we won’t do.
· There is always something that is too much, too far out of our comfort zone, too sacrificial for us.
· We all lack one thing
· The thing we lack is the thing that separates us from God.
· This “one thing: is the same for everyone - fully trusting and surrendering our relationship to God
· We all, like the rich young ruler, need to stop trying and start being.

(v. 23-27) Looking at his disciples, Jesus said, “Do you have any idea how difficult it is for people who ‘have it all’ to enter God’s kingdom?” The disciples couldn’t believe what they were hearing, but Jesus kept on: “You can’t imagine how difficult. I’d say it’s easier for a camel to go through a needle’s eye than for the rich to get into God’s kingdom.” That set the disciples back on their heels. “Then who has any chance at all?” they asked. Jesus was blunt: “No chance at all if you think you can pull it off by yourself. Every chance in the world if you let God do it.”

· The day our marriage really became a healthy marriage was the day I decided to begin loving Beth, not because I had to, as if I thought I had to earn her love, but because I wanted to. Much like the ruler in the story I felt that if I did “enough” then Beth would love me.
· But just like in marriage, our relationship with God is not based on doing “enough”.
· So what is the one thing that keeps you from fully surrendering to God. From letting go and being?
· May God show you the one thing you lack, and help us to understand that nothing else we do will ever compensate for it.


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