This past weekend, our church hosted a yard sale. This was the second yard sale of the year for our church. We hold a yard sale twice a year.
As I looked upon the mounds and mounds of clothes, the lines and lines of shoes, I thought to myself, "It this isn't a visual sermon on stewardship, I don't know what is."
So much stuff and never satisfied.
Such a wealthy nation and yet poor and poverty ridden.
As I read Haggai today, I couldn't help but confess God's truth as the LORD says:
Give careful thought to your ways. You have planted much, but have harvested little. You eat, but never have enough. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothes, but are not warm. You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it.
God calls the people to rebuild the temple, but they feel the time is not yet right. Why? They feel they live in scarcity. Even though their homes are paneled--strong and covered, the like the homes of the wealthy--they feel poor.
God smacked me upside the head. I got a whack on the back of my crown like Gibbs gives to DiNozzo on NCIS.
You see, our church has been considering a new building project for at least the ten years I have been their pastor. We've been moving slowly. We've come upon a lot of roadblocks, but perhaps our biggest roadblock is our own "paneled homes."
Give thought to your ways, declares God.
Just how many outfits of clothing do we need? How many pairs of shoes? How much food and entertainment do we need in our lives? Or modes of communication? How many cars and how much insurance coverage will it take to make us feel mobile and secure?
How many bedrooms or how much space is needed in our homes?
All one has to do is go to a neighborhood yard sale and one gets the picture loud and clear.
Our money does fall through holes in our pockets.
Not because we need new pockets.
We need new ways.