The May 13-19 entry in the Come, Follow Me manual covers a few important topics, centering on whether we trust the Lord enough to do what He says.
The primary focus is on the conversation that Christ had with the rich young man, hence the question “What lack I yet?”
Our purpose in embracing the Gospel of Jesus Christ, in making covenants to follow Him, is to do all the things that are necessary for us to get back to God. This requires us to exercise faith, repent of whatever behaviors may take us off the gospel path, make and keep covenants, and then constantly maintain the course throughout our lives.
Sometimes we sum these things up with just the basic commandments; don’t kill, don’t lie, don’t steal, don’t commit whoredoms, and so on. The rich young man was already keeping these commandments but still wanted to know from Christ whether he was missing anything.
Christ’s response may not have been exactly what the rich young man expected, because he had a hard time embracing it despite his desire to follow the Savior.
“…go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven…”
Now, some of us might be in a similar situation as the rich young man, and would, therefore, receive a similar answer to that question. What’s more important is 1) the Lord tailored His answer to the individual who asked it, and 2) it required a significant spiritual contribution from the young man.
None of us is so close to perfection–or even excessive righteousness–that we’re one or two simple steps away from fully living the Gospel. The blessings attached to obedience require effort from us. They aren’t always to be found in places of comfort and ease. How else could our faith be tried?
The rich young man was attached to his possessions and struggled with the idea of selling them, even for the kingdom of God. You can probably understand that! Imagine if you asked this question of the Savior and the answer was to sell your car, sell your house, give away the equity, and head out into the world with no temporal security and nothing but your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ to sustain you.
We’d all like to think we have the necessary faith to do that without any hesitation. After all, that would be the righteous thing to do. But could you do it? Are you faithful enough?
Your answer to that is as personal as Christ’s answer to the rich young man. Trust in the Lord, brothers and sisters. Work on building the kind of faith that could answer that question in the Lord’s way. It may not happen today or tomorrow.
But if it did, we should all strive to be ready.
This week’s lesson also includes the Savior’s teachings on:
—Marriage (Matthew 19:1-9, Mark 10:1-12)
—Divorce (Matthew 19:8)
“What Lack I Yet?” – Elder Larry R. Lawrence, October 2015