Monday, May 30, 2005

My Stuff and the Good Life

I posted this as a comment to Christian Democrat's blog. (When I learn how to make a link, I'll do it.)

A couple of weeks ago, I had a mental image of Jesus and the disciples walking around from place to place, and they were all hitched up like a team of horses to a trailer that contained their stuff.

Like most Americans, I have lots of stuff, and I have acquired all of this stuff so that I can have a better, more convenient, easier life. I had to have a new computer to make my job easier; I got a new SUV so that I'd feel "safer" on the road; the list goes on. But now I see that because I have all of this stuff, I am more tied down and less free than before. I have to work to pay for all this stuff, and I have to keep a close eye on it to make sure that no one steals it. All the stuff that I thought would help me to enjoy life is actually enslaving me.

I'm praying daily that I can be more like Jesus--less preoccupied with material possessions and more concerned about the people around me.

1 comment:

Preston said...

Great thoughts. I think that two stories illustrate your point very well. First, when Jesus tells the rich young man to sell all his possessions if he wants to participate in God's kingdom. Jesus didn't care about the guy's stuff; he cared about his freedom. As long as the man held on to his stuff, which you correctly stated that we do the same thing, he couldn't hold on to Jesus' agenda.
Second, when Zaccheus tells Jesus that he's going to repay the people he's ripped off and give away a bunch of his stuff, Jesus said that at that point, salvation had come to his house. I don't think he meant, "Yea, now Zaccheus is going to heaven!" I think instead he's saying, "Look everyone! This guy gets it, he's repented, he gets what I'm saying about kingdom living, and now he's free! He's not a slave to his stuff anymore."
I think that this is why Jesus talks more about money than pretty much anything else - money and things enslave us so easily and rob us of the free, abundant life that God always intended us to live.