Yesterday’s sermon at our church was so powerful for me. Our month-long series titled “Strapped” has had us looking at what the Bible says about money. We’ve looked at how God sees our money as a tool and a test. We’ve considered contentment in our lives. Yesterday we tackled greed in our lives.
Yikes. At first glance I thought, “I’m glad this is not a problem with ME!” But as our pastor said, “Greed is hard to see in the mirror [in ourselves].”
We looked at the passage in Luke 12:13-21 where the rich man decides to tear down his barns and build bigger ones to store his “abundance” rather than giving it to others in need.
And then came the illustration…
Our pastor asked, “Who likes chocolate chip cookies?” Hands went up all over the auditorium. He called a naïve woman named Shelley up on stage who had enthusiastically raised her hand. Our pastor then pulled out two freshly baked cookies on a plate. He talked about how much HE loves chocolate chip cookies and how delicious they are. He then proceeds to eat one in front of the woman (and the rest of us, with stomachs growling, and mouths watering).
While eating he talks about how much he’d LIKE to give Shelley a cookie, but he really likes them himself. He wonders, “If I give Shelley this cookie, what will I do if God never provides me with another chocolate chip cookie?” Then he prayed for Shelley and asked God to provide her some chocolate chip cookies, or someone who could share theirs with her.
That was the stab to my heart. What if God doesn’t provide?
How often do I lead my life as if God might not provide? In my effort to “be a good steward” of what God has given me, how often have I held on to my “stuff” just in case God doesn’t provide for me?
In my desire to be frugal, how many times do I come across as being greedy?
How many times am I standing by the person who has a need and instead of taking care of it, I just promise to pray for them?
While I am all about not overspending and “saving for a rainy day,” I’m vowing now to be more generous at the same time, not holding back my “chocolate chip cookies” and trusting that God will continue to be generous to me as He always has been in the past.
Thank you for your generosity towards us. Ken is presently on his way home from his latest travels to South East Asia.