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From the Pulpit: Storing our crops and goods (Luke 12:16-21)

In the Gospel of Luke, we hear about Christ’s parable on the rich man whose field yielded a great number of crops. This man had so much that he didn’t even know what to do with all his goods and riches and he built an even greater house to store everything in. He then says to his soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink and be merry.” However, God then says “Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?”

In today’s society a person’s “success” is often determined by this: How big is my house, and how many nice things do I have filling it? We identify ourselves with our possessions and how we acquired them. When describing ourselves, often we begin with our jobs, especially if it is a lucrative job. We spend our entire lives working to continually amass money, possessions, luxury and often more than what we will ever need. If we look back 50 years ago, how many luxuries did families have? How many cars, televisions and even things we consider essential today such as appliances? Not many families had these things but now they are considered essentials. We can never have enough stuff and we never seem to be happy with what we have. We always want more and the reality is no matter how much we have it will never be enough. We think we can be happy once we have everything we want. We should know by now that money and possessions can’t bring us happiness or else we would not see the sad stories of celebrities taking their own lives. Only God can truly fill our hearts and everything else will never be enough.

Our lives today have become so much about work and building up our estates that many people work many more hours than a typical 40-hour work week and often families take the brunt of that. We don’t spend time with our families or loved ones, but our work becomes us and our love. Our work ends up becoming the reason we live instead of just a way to make a living. As Christians we need to continually put our lives into perspective. Our first duty is to serve God, and help those in need. Working our entire lives to build up our homes with money and “stuff” does us no good when after we pass we leave it all behind.

Our focus in life should be on our spiritual life and relationship with Christ. Our calendars should revolve around Christ and not just fitting him in when we have a chance. One thing this pandemic should have reminded everyone is that we are not in control and that is what scares people the most. We should be living a life so that at any moment we can be prepared to meet our creator. We want to be able to stand before Christ with a good conscience and truly be able to answer the simple question; did we do what he commanded us? Or, did we focus on ourselves and lose sight of Him. We do not know when we will be called and we must always be prepared. When we stand before God we want him to call us “good and faithful servants” and not “fools.”

(From the Pulpit is a weekly sermon provided by the clergy members of the Weirton Ministerial Association.)

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