Death is truly the great equalizer of men. Sometimes, when I look at all my “stuff” I think about this.
Sure, I enjoy it. And God certainly has no problem with wealth (not mine but wealth in general 🙂 ) as evidenced by King David, Solomon, Abraham and others. God often blesses His children materially.
And if we have been one of those so blessed (and if you live in the United States, you pretty much qualify), how do we put all this together? How do we reconcile wealth and faith?
Do we even have to?
If we do, then First of all, we share what we have, financially and otherwise. We give financially and we share of our possessions generously. We don’t always have to sell our excess. We can give it away. (Obviously, there are exceptions.) And if we do sell it, we are fair. We never try to take advantage. We are truthful and honest about whatever we are selling.
Secondly, we are thankful for what we do have and we let God know often. I don’t think there’s a day that goes by
that I don’t thank God for my abundant blessings. In fact, there are days I question why God is so good to me.
Some would wonder why I feel blessed. I don’t live in a new home but it’s lovely and charming, and is a testament to all the hard work my husband and I have put into it. There’s not a room that doesn’t hold something I’ve created. I finally bought a car (used) last year after driving the former one for sixteen years.
Third, we don’t hang on too tightly. We realize that our homes really are temporary and only a place to hang our hat for a while.
Fourth, and this may sound strange, but we live “less than” we can. We might be financially able to buy the most expensive but we don’t. We shop carefully and frugally. Our “stuff” doesn’t always have to be new.
I’m not a saint. I would love to own a vacation home in the Caribbean like I see on House and Garden TV. In fact just a few days ago, I watched a show where a very young couple bought a “quaint” three hundred and fifty thousand dollar vacation home near the Bahamas. The mom, who didn’t work outside the home and had only one child, said she would feel so much less stress if she had a place to get away to.
But “teenytinyredcabin” will have to do and I love our little place up north.
But even with all I have I sometimes find myself wanting more. Wanting the newest. Wanting the latest. But when I clean this big ole’ house, I know “more” is not what I need because then there’s more to clean, repair, move around, etc. 🙂
There are more references in Scripture to money and our treasures here on earth than to salvation, prayer, etc. The majority of the parables Jesus taught center around money.
Because loving and coveting “things” is where most people get into trouble. Financial greed is the ground floor for almost all illegal activity. Greed and longing are what take us away from God.
I overheard my mother say something Christmas Eve, “I have all I need.” What a wonderful place to be in your life.
I love the saying that goes like this: “You don’t see a u-haul following a hearse.” Although I bet there are some in those processions that can just imagine all the stuff they might be inheriting that would take truck to bring home!
Anyway, I hope I didn’t make anyone feel guilty, especially so soon after Christmas. But what better time to think about wealth and possessions. Most of us are putting away our Christmas decorations this week. (I already have.) Here’s a little hint. I always evaluate what decorations I didn’t use this year. Is it because I don’t like them anymore? Or do I need to use them differently next year? However I answer these questions, determines whether I keep them or donate them. It’s a great way to keep Christmas “stuff” in check.
For example, this year I never even took out my Christmas dishes and I can’t say I missed them. I have wonderful soft green dishes that would also work so maybe I need to think through even having Christmas dishes. Or maybe I should get around to getting rid of some other china I have to make room for the Christmas dishes that are stored in the basement. These are just some of the thought processes I’m going through right now that might help you as well.
God bless and I hope you have a good day.