What Do I Lack?

Good Teacher, I run to You, kneeling
I am young, I am rich, I have power
I have kept all the rules, yet I’m feeling
that there’s something inside me gone sour

So I come to you, yearning perfection
I have longed for a life without end
And I bring to You one burning question
What good thing can I do to ascend?

You ask why I call you “Good Teacher”
Only “good” can be equal to “God”
But Your goodness is Your best-known feature
Don’t look down on my question as odd

I am down on my knees and at Your feet
I am looking up into Your eyes
I see a love there that is complete
So Your answer, I know, will be wise

You must see that I give much to the poor
Yet You tell me one thing I still lack:
I must sell all my things and give much more
And Your answer just takes me aback

Sell my things? All my worldly possessions?
All the things that I treasure so much?
Could You not make a few, small concessions?
Would a few put me out of Your touch?

Do You know what it’s like to lose power?
Do You know what true poverty does?
Do You know how to need every hour?
To recall just the way Your life was?

But I see that Your answer is wisdom
And the choice to be made must be mine
If I follow You into Your kingdom
I must trade the world for the divine

I can feel, as I rise, my face falling
Now I find myself turning my back
I would lose myself, heeding Your calling
Toward the very One thing that I lack

As I leave, does Your heart break inside You?
Did my answer come as a surprise?
If I sold out to come walk beside You
Would a look of love still light Your eyes?

©2005, WKB | See also What The Rich Man Lacked

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One thought on “What Do I Lack?

  1. Keith,we used this at our last Men’s retreat. We asked each to consider and answer what Jesus would tell them was their “one thing”. It was a great time of sharing.

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