Share the Wealth

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My friends, Paris and her husband, just bought a house, both attend school, and both work full time jobs. Needless to say, they are doing well financially. They already own two cars but as part of her husband’s job, they were given a company car. So between the two of them they have three cars.

Recently, they felt the Lord nudging them to give away one of their vehicles. They know a woman whose car frequently breaks down, even stalling sometimes right on the highway.

Despite the obvious need, Paris has wrestled over the idea. She doesn’t really want to give away the car. What if one of their cars breaks down? What if her husband has a job change down the road and loses his company car? She wants to keep all she can so her and her husband will feel secure.

In Luke 12:13-21, crowds surround Jesus. A man calls out and says, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.” Jesus replies, “Man, who appointed me a judge or an arbiter between you?”

This man wants half of his family’s inheritance so he asks Jesus to set the legal situation straight. But as Jesus points out, he didn’t come to earth to handle legal matters.

The man in the crowd wasn’t asking Jesus for help because he wanted justice, instead, this man had greedy motive. Knowing this, Jesus tells all those around him, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” Life isn’t about how much stuff you own.

Jesus then tells a story about a rich man. This rich man owns fields that produce a lot of crop, making him very wealthy. The man was already rich, but now he had even more! What did he decide to do with it?

He decided to keep it all for himself. He built buildings to store all his stuff and then decided to sit back and enjoy (Luke 12:19). Then he died. That night.

And what happened to all his stuff? Well, the same thing that will happen to all of our stuff when we die –someone else gets it. Jesus ends the story by saying, “This is how it will be with whoever stores up things for themselves but is not rich toward God” (Luke 12:21). Life isn’t about how much stuff you own.

But how are we to be rich toward God? By saving and spending our wealth the way he desires. He calls us to love him and others with what he has given us.

After several days of wrestling, Paris decided that it was the right thing to give away their third car. It was so tempting to be selfish and store up their vehicle just in case they needed it later. Instead, they chose to be rich toward God and rich toward someone in need.

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