Sunday, August 18, 2019
Listen to two small children who are playing with toys and in a short matter of time one or both of them will exclaim: “Mine!” It doesn’t matter whether or not a specific toy is, indeed, one child’s or the other’s. Often it doesn’t even matter whether or not anyone is playing with a particular toy. The fact that another child is reaching for a toy can lead the other to exclaim “Mine!” What is being said is, “I want that toy and I don’t want you to have it. I don’t care whose toy it happens to be and I don’t care whether or not I’m playing with it at the time. You can’t have it because I unilaterally claim it to be mine! It’s not yours!”
HIS STUFF VERSUS MY STUFF
The truth is that anything and everything in our universe is the sole possession of the God who created them. This includes you and me. God looks at us and says, “Mine!” and it is a true statement, whether or not we believe it.
Rather than basking in the glory of being His possession, however, we fool ourselves into thinking that we can make His stuff into our stuff. His stuff is still His stuff. That will never change. What has changed is that we have rebelled against being His possession. When anyone makes the mistake of hoarding God’s stuff and calling it their own, Jesus says, they become fools.
The miracles of God’s creation are so common and predictable in our average day that we hardly think of it. From the farmer’s seed in prepared, nutrient-rich soil to the come and go of the seasons we mark our calendars and plan our vacations months–even years–in advance.
The Psalmist exclaims: “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands” (Psalms 19:1). Yet there are days when we hardly give it a second thought.
And so, it is easy to slide into thinking that these things are mine and those things are yours. The truth is that it is all God’s. Just as God gives the soil, rain and sun for the farmer to manage the seed’s bounty, so, also, God gives us what we have for a reason. As He has been generous with us, so also, He tells us to be generous towards others (2 Corinthians 9:6-15). The work of a fool, Jesus says, is to gather what God has generously provided to us and to declare: “Mine!”