Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Relax...

"What I'm trying to do here is get you to relax, not to be so preoccupied with getting so you can respond to God's giving. People who don't know God and the way God works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how God works. Steep yourself in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. You'll find your everyday human concerns will be met. Don't be afraid of missing out." - Luke 12:22-31 from
The Message: Remix

As I am working through a capital campaign within the community of faith I currently serve, we are reading through and studying Michael Slaughter's book Money Matters. Though I find myself theologically disagreeing with Slaughter at times and the whole notion of talking about my money and spending in a theological manner gives me the heebie jeebies (I'm afraid words like "prosperity" may come up, one of Slaughter's fundamental points is that God chooses freedom over oppression for humanity.

In other words, if you look through the Bible story and throughout our history as a people of God you will see that God chooses to loose chains and fight oppression rather than oppress or hold us in bondage. God calls Abraham to establish himself and his ancestors as the people of God, Moses to lead those people out of captivity, Joseph to lead them into the promised land, the judges and prophets to lead the people once they get there, and so on and so forth. Jesus Christ, God With Us, through his birth, life, ministry, death, and resurrection, tears the veil between God and humanity and defeats sin and death for all time in order that we may live as a free people to bring about the kingdom on earth as it is in heaven.

Keeping up appearances, getting that next best thing, living beyond our means in a life of constant consumerism shackles us to our material possessions through oppressive debt. Jesus reminds the disciples (and us) here in Luke that God will provide if we focus ourselves on our relationship with God and prioritize our life (including our finances) in a way that keeps us focused on the real love and caring that comes to us from God through Jesus Christ.

2 comments:

Steve Heyduck said...

Good stuff, Kyle. Balance, freedom, priorities....

I got a chance to hear someone else preach a few weeks ago, and heard him quote Howard Hughes answer to the question of "how much money is enough?"

Hughes answer was "just a little more."

What sad commentary on our society that the vast majority of us feel that way. And I don't think it is usally about the money, but about wanting something, maybe anything, else.

I haven't read that book by Slaughter, but found his Unlearning Church to have been a gerat resource.

postmodernmethodist said...

thanks for the comments steve, read Unlearning Church too before $ matters, liked it a lot more, interesting quote from hughes, just watched the aviator again recently, he was one interesting dude, also been reading Wendell Berry, mentioned him before in another posting, interesting stuff about the sin and death in materialism and consumerism