Saturday, July 15, 2006

thoughts from the berry patch

The Parable of the Rich Fool

Then someone called from the crowd,"Sir, please tell my brother to divide my father's estate with me."
But Jesus replied, "Man, who made me judge over you to decide such things as that? Beware! Don't always be wishing for what you don't have. For real life and real living are not related to how rich we are."
Then he gave an illistration. "A rich man had a fertile farm that produced fine crops. In fact, his barns were full to overflowing -he couldn't get everything in. He thought about his problem, and finally exclaimed, 'I know -I'll tear down my barns and build bigger ones! Then I'll have room enough. And I'll sit back and say to myself, "Friend, you have enough stored away for years to come. Now take it easy! Wine, women, and song for you!" '
"But God said to him, 'Fool! Tonight you die. Then who will get it all?'
"Yes, every man is a fool who gets rich on earth but not in heaven."

(Luke 12:13-21, The Living Bible)

The words of Jesus are rich with parables. Knowing that hidden treasure abounds within them keeps my eyes peeled. Today in the sultry noonday sun, I was hunting for blackcaps behind the barn. After expertly picking over a patch, I turned over a prickly branch and voila! More juicy ripe fruit appeared. It pays to hunt thoroughly. I would've been content with my sour-cream container of berries, but now I see more.

Here are some juicy berries for the picking from this passage:

- a dumb request from a tattle-tale can spawn an insightful conversation. (" Sir, please tell my brother...")

-it's not good to always wish for what you don't have. We must've needed to hear this, because Jesus said it.

-real life and real living are not related to how rich we are. What a relief! If they were related to wealth, only a few would taste life. The proof is definitely in the pudding: how many truly satisfied rich people do you know?

-a bright idea or clever solution doesn't always solve the problem. ("I know -I'll tear down my barns and build bigger ones!") Can you picture the light-bulb dancing over his head? (Bible times: perhaps a candle.) How many "fixes" in our lives need to be revisited with this principal in mind?

-self-gratification is not a commendable goal. Might that be the reason that the promised portion of Islamic martyrs (wine, women, and song) sounds so incredibly shallow?

-it is not foolish to get rich on this earth. But to ignore investing into eternity is the real foolishness.

I hope you can chew on that berry for a long time.


Blogger Linda said...

Excellent post, thanks!

10:11 PM  

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