Sunday, November 13, 2011

This Will I Do

Luke 12:18  And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods.

Neil Camara took the above picture.  It’s titled “The Burning Skies of Illinois”.  Seeing the picture brought to mind the passage that includes the above verse.  Think with me as we read further.

Luke 12:16-21  And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully:   And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits?  And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods.  And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.  But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?  So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.

How often do we talk about wanting to follow someone with a vision, someone successful, someone charismatic?  Well, here’s a man who’s successful, has a vision, maybe charismatic, appears to “have it all”.  There are plans to expand his business by adding more and larger barns.  Then he’ll be “cruisin’”.  Sitting back, relaxing, enjoying the fruits of his labor.  But God says he’s leaving this earth before that’s going to happen.  Whoops!

When I saw Neil’s photograph,  I immediately thought to myself that the sky looks like it’s ready to take the landowner up.  Before he can enjoy the relaxation he was working toward.  Before he could leave any legacy greater than a single, lonely barn.  Don’t get me wrong.  If you read my March post “Do You Have the Right Stuff?”, you’ll know neither God nor I have anything against having things or planning for a comfortable retirement.  What is wrong is putting things before God or replacing God with things. 

Last week, we talked about the mindsets of abundance and scarcity, based on some thoughts from John Maxwell.  That’s what the mindset of scarcity does: it puts me in the position of being responsible to create my own blessings, makes me think there won’t be any blessings if I don’t create them myself, puts those blessings ahead of God or eliminates God from the picture altogether. 

On the other hand, the mindset of abundance allows me to partner with God in gathering blessings, without having to be 100% responsible for their being here.  Abundance thinking recognizes my inability to do enough to create the blessings I have, requiring something beyond myself to do that.  So, instead of taking a back seat to my blessings, God is recognized as their source.  That takes a lot of responsibility off my shoulders.  Instead, I don’t set the level for blessing, God does, in my best interest.  So, I can enjoy whatever I get, without having to wonder if more would have been better, without always facing a sense of failure because, whatever I create as blessing, there’s always a way to see it as insufficient compared to someone else’s created wealth.  

If God is the source, then what I have is what’s best for me.  If that seems insufficient, then it may be because I didn’t partner sufficiently with God.  I'm not sure about anyone else, but I can have the tendency to try to take control of things at the worst possible time.  But that’s something I can fix easily and quickly by letting Him handle that, too.  Allowing God into my life and letting Him direct my heart and thinking.

What are you doing, today, to move your focus from filling the barns onto the Barn Filler?

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