Posted at ChristianDevotions.us. It’s a story inspired by Willow Creek’s Care Center–thank you to my friends there!
And so the people were restrained from bringing more, because what they already had was more than enough to do all the work. Exodus 36:6b-7
There are ten minutes I dread each Saturday. Pray for me.
The food bank where I volunteer is about someone’s need. The kids shyly build towers with colored blocks while their parents fill out paperwork. Are there toys at home to play with? The parents’ eyes are filled with pain. The pain is about all they bring with them. Some walk for miles for the general public’s leftovers. Then I walk out to meet a mother and son with a shopping cart of produce, frozen meat, and maybe some chocolate-chip cookies (they’re his favorite, I’m told). The smile I see represents freedom from worry.
Later, when I am at my job in a retail store, the ten minutes I dread, happen. I see this place is all about wants. Kids run around unnoticed. They yell across the store, “I want this!” Parents don’t even look up. “No, you just got a new toy!” The mother is busy telling me what a disgrace it is, not having the color she wants. Her eyes look around with empty pain, even though she’s carrying a purse I have to pay for as luggage at the airport. I meet them to check out. She has two carts with kitchen gizmos and enough clothes to supply the state of Ohio. There is no freedom.
When is it enough? Where is freedom?
When Moses started to build the temple, the people gave an abundance. Yet there was a point when Moses said, “You’ve given more than what God asked. Bless your generosity, but keep what you have.” When is enough, enough? There has to be a point in our consumer-saturated culture when we say, “I’ve got enough.” Just to be thankful for a shopping cart of food, and not the gizmos to go with it.
Think about the items you want. Can you do the work God has given you without them? This place is about God. Use the time, talents, and money God has given you to bless others. It will bring freedom.
Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net and Ambro.