I really do believe that money has the power to bless life or steal life and today I’d like to think about the impact that our faith in Christ has on the way we manage our money. Let’s look at the parable of the rich farmer; I think there are three important things to see.
First of all, Jesus tells this story in Luke 12:16-21, but before he begins he says in verse 15, “Take heed, and beware of all covetousness; for a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”
The parable goes on to say:
“The land of a rich man produced plentifully, 17 and he thought to himself, ‘What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’ 18 And he said, ‘I will do this: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. 19 And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.”’ 20 But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ 21 So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God.”
Secondly, I like it when the farmer said, “you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.” Notice Jesus wasn’t saying that was a bad thing, but he did say, “You fool, you could have been doing that all along. You could have been celebrating life all along. You have waited until the end and now it’s all done. You had enough to eat, drink, and be merry, you had enough to celebrate all along and you wasted it, waiting for tomorrow, but there will be no tomorrow. I I think of how often you and I wait to celebrate.
Are you always waiting? Are you grateful for the gift of God’s grace and all that has happened so that you can find this moment, today, worthy of celebration? When you know and trust in God’s you’re invited to a celebration that goes on and on. It’s great to eat, drink, and be merry, today for it is God’s gift to you.
But third, the danger with money is the power it has to make us selfish. It’s so easy to see only MY needs. The Rich Farmer said it was my land and my crops and my barns, it was all about me, my and mine. And because it was all about him, he trusted in what he had and postponed enjoying his life and being a blessing, until it was too late. Tonight your soul’s required of you, you fool, you missed it. All along he had enough. If only he’d been grateful to share with others and use all that he had to be a blessing. Money has the power to enable us to live and celebrate now, but to also share with others so that they might know the gift of God’s grace, to bless their life, to be able to celebrate now.
There is an old saying that is so very true: you take a piece of glass and it’s a window you look through and see the world. You put silver behind it and it becomes a mirror and all you see is yourself. It is so easy to have happen. When you help invite other people to the “party” and you realize that you have enough to enjoy life today and you feel secure, whether you have a little or a lot, but because you have trust in God. It’s then that you discover the power of your money.