Last weeks Gospel reading really speaks to all of us, but especially those who value material things above all else.
Jesus told us a parable of a rich man who had so much crop that was harvested that he had to pull down old barns and build up new ones to fit it all in. This rich man had so much that he would be able to live comfortably for the years to come, but Jesus scorns him and says that he shouldn’t store up treasures for himself and instead make himself rich in the eyes of God.
What does this really mean though, make yourself rich in the eyes of God?
Rich, to be wealthy, to own lots, however, Jesus tells us to not hoard everything. Jesus goes on to tell us to not build more barns to house all our belongings. Jesus is asking us to be rich, but not materially. But what does this mean and where do we draw the line?
In our capitalist world, our society values ‘things’. We value nice cars, big houses, fancy dinners and all that jazz. We compliment those who get that fancy promotion, we throw extravagant parties throwing all the money we can to impress our friends and we job hunt based on how much we are going to be paid.
Jesus’ message seems to almost counter this belief entirely. However, I think Jesus speaks to us a little more deeply than we first see.
I think a fantastic example of this is Christmas. Often times at Christmas, we are constantly rushing around, what presents do we buy, how are we going to feed everyone coming over, busy busy busy!
Our intentions are pure. We want to make sure people are fed and that we get gifts for those that we love. However, in the rush of it all, we forget the true meaning of Christmas. We forget the joy of the birth of Jesus, we forget to tell those around us that we love them and we forget to slow down and take it all in.
Our sin isn’t hoarding too many treasures, it is placing the importance of ‘things’ above the most important things of all: Love, family, friendship and God.
Jesus tells us that we will never be happy if we keep chasing material goods and we need to chase the important things in our lives.
So rather than fill up your life with material treasures, what can you do to fill yourself up with the most important things in your life?