On many occasions in my life, at various milestones, I have found myself wondering how much I need. Most often, I have reached the conclusion that as long as I have enough to eat, clothes to wear and a place to call home, then that is enough. There have been times when these three basics have not been easy to achieve, but for the most part, I have always had enough. Something interesting has happen since I became a Christian though. These days, I no longer think about whether I have enough. My whole perception has changed. These days I find myself wondering how I can share the riches that have flowed into my life. I have no more money than before, no less debt and no more stuff. But now I feel wealthy and fortunate like never before. I no longer imagine winning the Lottery or other such fantasy windfalls. Knowing God and his kingdom really has made me richer. It’s as if my debts have been cancelled.
“At the end of every seventh year you must cancel the debts of everyone who owes you money. This is how it must be done. Everyone must cancel the loans they have made to their fellow Israelites. They must not demand payment from their neighbours or relatives, for the Lord’s time of release has arrived. This release from debt, however, applies only to your fellow Israelites—not to the foreigners living among you. “There should be no poor among you, for the Lord your God will greatly bless you in the land he is giving you as a special possession. You will receive this blessing if you are careful to obey all the commands of the Lord your God that I am giving you today. The Lord your God will bless you as he has promised. You will lend money to many nations but will never need to borrow. You will rule many nations, but they will not rule over you. “But if there are any poor Israelites in your towns when you arrive in the land the Lord your God is giving you, do not be hard-hearted or tightfisted toward them. Instead, be generous and lend them whatever they need. Do not be mean-spirited and refuse someone a loan because the year for cancelling debts is close at hand. If you refuse to make the loan and the needy person cries out to the Lord, you will be considered guilty of sin. Give generously to the poor, not grudgingly, for the Lord your God will bless you in everything you do. There will always be some in the land who are poor. That is why I am commanding you to share freely with the poor and with other Israelites in need.
My goal from now on will be to look for where there is a need that I can help with. I no longer care about my position in the world. I no longer care about appearing to be successful or wealthy or comfortable in society. I know that I am rich beyond anything I could earn by working under my own strength, and I want to find ways to share the wealth available to all in God’s kingdom.
Deuteronomy 13:1-15:23, Luke 8:40-9:6, Psalms 71:1-24, Proverbs 12:5-7