Sunday, August 1, 2010

Rich towards God

Someone in the crowd said to Jesus, "Teacher, tell my brother to divide the family inheritance with me." But he said to him, "Friend, who set me to be a judge or arbitrator over you?" And he said to them, "Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one's life does not consist in the abundance of possessions." Then he told them a parable: "The land of a rich man produced abundantly. And he thought to himself, `What should I do, for I have no place to store my crops?' Then he said, `I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, `Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.' But God said to him, `You fool! This very night your life is being demanded of you. And the things you have prepared, whose will they be?' So it is with those who store up treasures for themselves but are not rich toward God." Luke 12:13-21

Years ago, when I was a young teenager, our neighbors, who owned many successful businesses and many hotels, decided that they needed to improve their home in order to increase the value of the property. They had the grounds landscaped and built a pool that was surrounded by a Japanese garden. They also had a high fence built to protect the property. t was a lovely pool, with a gorgeous deck at one end. They never used it. Their children were about grown and rarely returned to enjoy it. The parents were too busy and constantly traveling to revel in the joyful space they had created. We were told to use it as much as possible, and we took that invitation as our responsibility. We enjoyed it thoroughly, although we always felt a bit as if we were eating stolen fruit since it was so posh and so lovely.

God's love for us is so real and tangible and we often get so wrapped up in our fiscal and physical worries that we forget to enjoy and revel in the love we have been given. Jesus came to earth not to arbitrate but to offer. To offer light to those in darkness, abundance to the empty handed and love to the broken-hearted. He took up our flesh so that we are no longer distance relatives but children of a living and generous God. We are overflowing we God's love in our midst, and we miss opportunity upon opportunity to enjoy the richness of God.

Today, I want to try to live being rich towards God, rejoicing in the people and relationships God has blessed me with. I am not a monetarily wealthy woman, but I am overflowing with joy and blessings in the people that surround me. And in them I see the face of God. God, give me the strength today to enjoy and celebrate the incredible richness I have received in those around me.

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