November 7, 2011

I Want Your Stuff

People were created to be loved.Things were created to be used.
The reason why the world is in chaos, is because things are being loved and people are being used.

I do not know who said this but the words could not be truer.  What is going on in the world - in our own country - is crazy.  I makes me shake my head, turn off the TV, and pray a little harder.  And it makes me ask, "What is it all about?" And I think I've come up with an answer.

In a short word: stuff.

It's all about stuff.  Cool stuff, bigger stuff, more stuff...someone else's stuff.

When I listen to what they are saying, this is what it sounds like to me:
You have nicer stuff than me...and I want it.  Yeah, so you say you had to work 2 (or even 3) jobs off and on for the last 20 years to get your stuff.  You talk about how you ate nothing but Ramen noodles and PB&J's for almost a year to make your dreams happen; how everyone laughed at you because you drove a piece of junk for a car, or rode a bike, or took public transportation; how a "fun night" for you was having a night off of work to stay at home and play a board game with your kids. Yeah, good for you...that makes a real nice story.  But, see, I don't want to do that.

Because I want it now.

And I deserve it.  I am not sure why I deserve it, but I am sure there is a good reason out there somewhere.

And I know if I have more stuff, people will like me more, my relationship with God and those around me will deepen and flourish beyond my wildest imaginations, and we will finally have world peace.

Wait, you say you don't want to give me your stuff? You say you have a mortgage to pay, too?  And your kids like to eat on a daily basis?  And what do you mean that you are not willing to cut employees so I can have a share of the business you spent the last 30 years building? Can't you just cut a little more overhead or stop buying so many staples and paperclips - maybe switch to a generic brand of coffee?

What?  You say you won't do that?!?  You won't work harder so I can have it easier and work less?

Seriously?  Some people are so selfish.

Now give me your stuff.

Part of the war cry we are hearing right now is all about the "greed" of the "big guy".  I know some "big guys"; some men and women that have "got it made".  And they busted their butts for it, too.  They have sacrificed; long, long hours with days - or even weeks - away from their families; no eating out, no new clothes, no cool car...and LOTS of peanut butter sandwiches.  They saved, they planned, they pinched pennies...all to make a dream come true. They have succeeded but first they failed. And they picked themselves back up and tried again until they got it right. They are some of the hardest working people I have ever known.  And some of the most generous. In my opionion, they deserve every penny of their success and I would never think of demanding part of the reward for their blood, sweat and tears.

So I cannot help but wonder who are the truly greedy? What can be said of a movement that demands pay without work; benefits without responsibility; rewards without sacrifice? Instead of shouting in protest, how about being quiet long enough to hear the whispered motives of our hearts.

Oh, and before we forget: money can't buy you love. Or true friendship. Or intimacy.  If your life is lonely it is not because your wallet is empty, but because your relationship are. It costs nothing to spend time with a friend, to play a game with your kids, to take a walk with our spouse, to speak a prayer to your God.  It costs nothing; but the rewards are eternal.  And who needs stuff, when you've got people.

"All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty." ~ Proverbs 14:23

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, 
and where thieves break in and steal." ~ Matthew 6:19

“If a man will not work, he shall not eat.” ~ 2 Thess 3:10

How did we fail this generation so miserably - and so quickly? How do you think a lack of biblical instruction has influenced the "victim mentality" attitude of society today?  How can we change it?

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