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Letting God's Abundance Be All We Need

The abundance surrounding us Americans is truly awesome!!  Yet within our own country there are numerous examples of people literally dying from lack of basic human necessities.  On the other hand, we have wealthy people--individuals and corporations who have so much money that it will be impossible for them to ever spend it in one lifetime.  Yet they crave more.

King David was at the height of his reign and the peak of his power as ruler of Israel.  His army was prevailing against Israel's enemies, his coffers were full, he had beautiful wives and numerous children, yet as he walked on his palace roof in the heat of the day, he saw a beautiful woman bathing, desired her, demanded she be brought to him, and he forced himself on her.  She was another man's wife and her name was Bathsheba.  To cover his sin, he sought to bring her husband home from the battlefield, but Uriah the Hittite was a man of honor and integrity, and unknowingly put himself in mortal danger by refusing to avail himself of his marriage bed.  Thus, David arranged for him to be slaughtered in the front lines of the war that was then in progress.

The story has been romanticized and retold to appear as a great love story.  But the prophet Nathan let us and David know what God's thoughts about this action really were.  Nathan told the story of a greedy and insensitive man who was neighbor to a poor man with little to spare.  Yet when guests arrived at the home of the rich man, it was the only lamb of the poor man that was seized, killed, and served to the guests.  Thus, God clearly called out David for his sin or rape and murder, sins that had consequences that would affect his family for generations to come.  David was a man who had more than enough and yet his greed and misuse of power brought him low.

God has given all of us so much.  And it is perhaps more of a temptation for us who live in a land where unmeasured wealth is possible, so that we lose sight of what a blessing it is to have enough without craving and demanding more.  In fact, Jesus counsels his disciples and us to use only what we really need and give the rest to the poor.  All of God's word teaches us that God's generosity is to be treasured and shared, and not to be polluted by our greed for more than we need.

 

And now Father, send us out to do the work you have given us to do, to love and serve you as faithful witness of Christ our Lord.  To him, to you, and to the Holy Spirit, be honor and glory, now and forever,  Amen.

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