I was reading in Luke chapter 12 today when I came upon a story that I remember laughing about, oh-so-many years ago when I heard it read out of "The Message."
And He told them a parable, saying, “The land of a rich man was very productive. And he began reasoning to himself, saying, ‘What shall I do, since I have no place to store my crops?’ Then
he said, ‘This is what I will do: I will tear down my barns and build
larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years to come; take your ease, eat, drink and be merry.”’ But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your soul is required of you; and now who will own what you have prepared?’ So is the man who stores up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.” -Luke 12:16-21 NASB
As I read through the story, I began to see a bit of myself in that story. Not in the sense where it is necessarily talking about covetousness, but rather in the fact that in all that was going on, he lost sight of God and his connection with Him.
For me, it is easy for me to get preoccupied with what all is going on in life and little by little rely more on my own strength than on my relationship with God. Every once-in-a-while I get to a place where I notice I am not spending as much time with God as I want or as I used to. It's not like I just say one day that I don't want to anymore, it's that I let things gradually slip in the way of our relationship. My focus gets skewed and I am certain I miss out on things God is trying to teach me.
When I think about the story I wonder if he had a decent relationship with God prior to the year of abundance. Maybe the year was a year God blessed him so that he could join in blessing others with God by what God had given him. Maybe he was close but as things started doing well, he forgot to spend time with God. He decided he had worked hard enough and wanted to a take a few years off and just have some fun. While taking time off and having fun are not bad in themselves, it's obvious that God didn't approve of him keeping all of it to himself and not giving back to God.
Maybe it's time start evaluating life and seeing places where I may have began to lose focus of what God is wanting to do in my life. Where have I forgotten to put Him first?
****Wondering what we found so funny about that passage? In "The Message" it says
"Fool! Tonight you die!" Just never thought I would hear that come out of the Bible.....then again The Message really isn't a Bible.