Alcoholics Anonymous use the motto, “Let Go and Let God.” The person needs to let go of the use of alcohol to overcome the guilt, and shame that drinking has brought upon them and let God take care of their life.
Jesus says much the same thing in Mark 10:23-31, the Gospel lesson for Sunday. He tells his disciples that it’s difficult for the wealthy to enter the kingdom of God. The disciples are astonished and wonder who can be saved then. Wealth was considered a sign of God’s blessings. Jesus answers, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.” Peter still doesn’t quite get it, “See, we have left everything and followed you.”
However, if wealth doesn’t give a person an inside track to the kingdom and poverty doesn’t either, then who can be saved?” October thirty first is Reformation Day. The motto is Faith Alone, Scripture alone, Grace alone. Even if I’m able to give the right confess that I am saved by grace through alone, a part of me still wants some credit. “I went ran the synod’s eight year gauntlet of college and seminary preparing to be a pastor.” Surely counts for something. “Forty eight years as a pastor and at least five were difficult congregations and that means nothing?”
Jesus then tell his disciples that anyone who has left home and family for the sake of the Gospel will receive a hundredfold in return in this life. Well that makes me feel better. But Jesus adds “with persecution.” Well, I didn’t count on that. However, Jesus quickly adds the blessing, “in the age to come.” So I have to wait and let God’s time play out.
Jesus concludes, “But many who are first will be last, and the last first.” Now which am I? Am I among the first who will be last or am I among the last who will be first? Oh well, like AA says, “Let Go and let God.”