November Stewardship Corner: Possessions

As I was looking for inspiration to write an article for Simply Living—Possessions, the service on September 25th was the inspiration I was looking for. I know you are wondering what the cows seen in the fog by Pastor Joanne (and Doug) have to do with it! Well, actually nothing! It was the Gospel, Luke 16:19-31, and Pastor Joanne’s sermon that provided the inspiration for me.
The cows were great for a smile and something we could relate to.

“There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously
every day. And at his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, who longed to
satisfy his hunger with what fell from the rich man’s table; even the dogs would come and lick
his sores.” -Luke 16:19-21

I feel fortunate—God has blessed me and many of us with more than we need. What do we need versus what do we want? Planning long term for what we “need” is not easy. We want to make sure we can take care of ourselves and not burden others as we grow old. Isn’t that why we worked and saved for all these years? How much money do I need? What should my home be like? How many cars are needed? What will we need to live to 80, 90, or maybe 100? Healthy living and modern medicine continue to increase the average life expectancy. These are difficult questions to answer and are real concerns.

However, so is taking care of others that are less fortunate. Many were born into a difficult situation, have been mistreated, or made bad choices to get themselves into the position that they need help. Sometimes we ask ourselves, “What are they going to do with what is given to them?” In all cases, an example of someone reaching out to help another human being shows love, compassion, and dignity. Things that humans desire and need to learn, so they can pass it on to another. Sharing our gifts—whether it is food, money, clothing, or just someone to talk with—goes a long way for those in need.

We are called to share our possessions with those in need. For people to help others, it is important that they are in a stable position so that they can help those that are less fortunate. While you plan responsibly to take good care of yourself and your family, remember the Lazaruses of the world that need our help too. As we help take care of those in need and trust God, we in turn will be taken care of.

Submitted by Dave Derleth