Soul Food for Hungry Adults: 28th Sunday in Ordinary Time, October 14th, 2012.
Gospel Reading: Mark 10:17-3o Jesus and the Rich Young Man.
You can’t be filled if you’re full. You cannot be ‘full-filled’! You can’t receive anything if you already have everything.
If you bring an empty glass, it can be filled, whether it’s big or small. But first, it must be emptied. I think it was St. Therese of Lisieux who said that whatever size glass, -meaning heart!- you bring to God, God will fill it if you want it filled.
The Rich Young Man in our Gospel story comes to Jesus, but he already has everything. He just wants to ‘buy’ his way into heaven, (or ‘eternal life’), by DOING this or that, whatever the Master would tell him. But he got upended by the answer he got! Jesus wanted to turn him upside down! If only he was willing to be ‘turned upside down’, then all the money would fall out of his pockets and he would be empty,- and ready to be filled by a relationship with Jesus.
You see, you cannot BUY heaven, you cannot DO something to get heaven as a reward. Because, real life is a pure Gift, poured into a heart that’s has emptied itself of its love of Things, and is ready to be filled up to overflowing by inviting the Son of God in.
Pardon the pun but you could say ‘the penny didn’t drop’, for the young man, because he would let go of nothing from the pockets of his heart, for God or for others in need, and he walked away sad. Jesus loved him, but had to let him go.
The following might make some sense, in relation to Jesus and the Rich Young Man: it’s from www.emptifulvessels.com.
awaits our opening up
to God who floods
the thirsting hearts
To thirst, to seek, to bring
the emptied vessel of the emptied heart
to One who longs for us,
to make a home in us:
Only this emptied, readied heart
Repent with opened door,-
believe the love that
is being poured on us,
(Seamus Devitt, C.Ss.R.)