December 3, 2017

Luke 12:16-21 (ESV)
The Lord told this parable, saying, “The land of a rich man produced plentifully, 17 and he thought to himself, ‘What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’ 18 And he said, ‘I will do this: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. 19 And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.”’ 20 But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ 21 So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God.”

Glory be to Jesus Christ!
All the material things we have, status we acquired in life, position we hold do not, and simply cannot, impart genuine meaning and significance to our lives.  These possessions are external to our inner being; for they cannot define us as human beings made “in the image and likeness of God.” Very often we find ourselves enamored, captivated or even enslaved by the “the abundance of our possessions!”

We must remember that the Lord did not create us in the divine image and likeness for a life dominated by worldly ambition or unrestrained self-indulgence; instead, He wants us to become ever more like Him in holiness.  But if we refuse to do that and try to find peace in worldly accomplishments and satisfying every self-centered inclination, we will become less than human.  We will become slaves to our desires and pleasures, which soon become addictions, and which will soon make us miserable and separate us even from those we love most in this life.  How easy it is for people to gain the whole world and lose their souls.

Of course, money, food, drink, comfort, wealth, relationships, and other blessings have their place in life, but they are not to become what life is about.  If we make them false gods, we will destroy ourselves and lose them also because only God is God.  No part of creation finds peace or fulfillment unless it is offered to Him for blessing in accordance with His purposes for it. And that includes you and me.

There is no path to the richness of the Kingdom apart from us growing in holiness, when we fast, pray, and give generously to the needy as well as when we are on guard for even the most subtle temptations to place the world before God.