Saturday, May 30, 2009

Crops and Barns

In Luke 12 we have recorded one of Jesus' parables. A rich man is doing so well at accumulating crops, that he says..."What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?" On the surface this seems to be a great problem to have and a completely normal question to ask. In reality this question reveals the sad state of this man's heart. He actually thinks he is blessed by the earth and the Creator of the earth to bless himself and in so doing find rest for his soul.

What could he have done with the abundance that had come into his hands from God's earth? He could have asked God why he had more than he needed. He could have asked God who needed what he had received. He could have seen the abundance as a sign that His ability to bless others had increased. He could have asked God, but he chose to ask himself. Big mistake.

Getting the answer from his own fearful mind, he tears down his existing barns and builds new ones to calm his soul. Then he dies and his soul is judged for its behavior on earth. He loses his soul. This is what will happen to every human being sooner or later. Our souls will be required of us and we will have no argument other than what we did with our soul--our mind, emotions and will.

The human soul was originally designed to receive and deliver love's abundance. When we have in our possession the means to bless others and we decide to build new barns instead, we offend the very nature of our souls and the nature of the universe.

In this parable, even the earth is smarter than this man. The earth that produced the crops for this man was generous with what it produced. The earth delivers what it produces over and over again into this man's hands. The man who produced nothing and received everything should have said "Who can I love with this?" Since he did not see the crops as being received by grace, he concluded that he had produced the wealth himself and could do with it whatever he pleased.

If he had asked about who should be loved with this, certainly God would have led him to care for his most intimate relationships first just as the earth is generous with all who live from its wealth and lets those who work the land eat first. Beyond caring well for his family, this man would have then been led into a life of generosity and love toward others. His soul would have been resting as he delivered what he received. Receiving much and delivering well allows the soul to rest

When you are blessed be careful not to seek rest for your soul through the building of bigger barns. Build bigger relationships through delivering love. Trust that the Creator will be contiinuously generous to you as you continue to be generous to others. If we can trust the earth to keep producing crops, we can certainly trust the Creator to keep taking care of us.

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