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Abundance

When the dew settled on the camp at night, the manna also came down.  Numbers 11:9

There’s a lot of chaos in the world these days creating havoc in so many lives.  But if we were to breakdown the situation into two basic schools of thought we’d probably arrive at the concepts of scarcity and abundance.  On one side you have people who believe everything in the world is limited.  Limited natural resources, limited finances, limited opportunities, limited food, limited education, and on and on.  On the other you have the concept of abundance.  That we are limited only by our will to seek, create, build, gather, harvest, and more.

God created a world teeming with abundance.  He has always provided and will always provide.  That’s not to say we don’t need to share in that abundance but rather we should live in the mindset of what we are given is 1) from God and 2) enough.

“Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life  does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” Luke 1:14

When we think of the gift of abundance from God, we can be swayed by the world into attributing it to “stuff.”  How much stuff, money, food, etc we have.  We will see that unfold today with Black Friday stories of fighting and grasping for more of that “stuff.” But in God’s world abundance is to be shared.  Whether we are blessed by money, talents, love, possessions, and more God is always asking us to give freely and abundantly just like Him.  

The concept of scarcity entered the biblical story when Pharaoh was worried about the drought and famine.  He greedily began gathering up all the grains and animals for himself.  He worried he wouldn’t have enough.  And throughout the Bible we read stories of people, like the prince who approached Jesus to become one of his disciples, who cannot open their treasure stores because of their fears of scarcity.

These conflicting world views are sometimes used to say Jesus is a socialist.  But that twists the message of the Bible.  A government which forcibly takes from one people (who they deem having too much abundance) and gives it to others (who they deem are not able to live abundantly) is acting out of that scarcity mindset.  Jesus always wants our heart.  He is powerful enough to demand it but wants it freely. 

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear.  Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?” Matthew 6:25

When I see young people on the streets screaming for the rich to “pay their fair share” it really saddens me. What is a “fair share?”  Who has determined what someone is “owed?”  Who has determined what is “enough?”  All that comes from a belief there isn’t enough.  But God has created a world of amazing abundance.  There will always be those that have more and those who have less.  The only person we owe anything to is Jesus.  And when we thank Him for His abundant love for us we should be spurred to share in all that He has given us.

Bible, bible study, Christian, Christian Church, christian encouragement, christian men, christian podcast, Christian women, Faith, Jesus, Jesus Follower, podcast, Uncategorized

Natural Resources

Ask the Lord for rain in the springtime; it is the Lord who sends the thunderstorms. He gives showers of rain to all people, and plants of the field to everyone. Zechariah 10:1

It rained at my house the other day.  You might read that and shrug, “big deal!”  But where I live it is a big deal.  I prayed that it would keep raining and raining for a week. Unfortunately, after a day the beautiful rain stopped.   While it fell, I sat mesmerized by the beauty of it.  Knowing it was filling reservoirs and streams, washing our streets, and filling birdbaths.  God is so good!

It made me think about all the natural resources we have been gifted from God.  With the most “controversial” being crude oil or petroleum.  I think so many people forget that crude oil, which could arguably be one of the greatest natural resource gifts, streams out naturally in places under the sea and from the ground.  More than 4,000 years ago asphalt (made from crude oil) was supposedly used in the construction of the walls of Babylon!   Persians found crude oil along the Euphrates and used it medicinally and for lighting.  It’s crude oil that has made so much of our modern world possible.  And when you think about it, other than uses for human needs, it serves no other purpose!

The heavens are yours; the earth also is yours; the world and all that is in it, you have founded them. Psalm 89:11

God has gifted man with billions of trees, coal, natural gas, water, fertile soil, all manner of minerals and more. What an amazing God we have that He would create resources for us to “discover” along the way to improve our lives!  As appointed stewards of this world, given to Adam in the garden, let’s give thanks for this bountiful land and remember who it all belongs to.