Two things I ask of you, Lord; Do not refuse me before I die: Keep falsehood and lies far from me; Give me neither poverty nor riches, But give me only my daily bread. Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you And say, “Who is the Lord?” Or I may become poor and steal And so dishonor the name of my God. (Proverbs 30:7-9)
As I had written previously in “The Beauty of God’s Scriptures,” I have been reading daily through Psalms and Proverbs. I have been driven to contemplations over various verses that I have read numerous times. By taking the time to focus on them, I have been repeatedly struck by the amazing truth to be found within the pages I read. I was especially struck this time by Proverbs 30:7-9. I know I’ve read it before, but as is the mystery of the Scriptures, verses bring new meaning to your life at various parts of your spiritual walk.
So, reading Proverbs 30:7-9 really struck me. In today’s American society where we are so focused on making money and so very materialistic, “I may have too much and disown you and say “Who is the Lord?” “ really hit home. Even though I might not consider myself very materialistic, still I can get caught in that feather noose (usually its books for me). When the TV has numerous shows exhibiting what happens to people drowning in a materialistic world bookended in commercials advertising the newest greatest thing; there is a problem. America, more than any other culture, is about things. Love doesn’t make the world go round in America, the newest thing does.
I am not a basher of America. I love America, but I know her faults too. I’ve lived here all my life and believe me, there are things I wish I could change. Materialism is one of them.
We, as a nation, have too much and we have turned our backs on God.
When I, as a person, am more than comfortable financially, I find myself loosing track of God in my life. It is the nature of human sin.
The flip side though is what happens when we don’t have enough? What happens if we are so poor that we have to steal to eat? We dishonor the name of our God. Not only is the simple act of stealing a sin (see the 10 Commandments in Deuteronomy 5:19), but it goes deeper than that, it’s about dishonoring God’s name. The thought of dishonoring the God who has given me so much, causes a bit of anxiety to well within my soul. I hope it does you as well.
I believe these three verses are going to become a prayer for me. A prayer that will move me to act, to give of any funds God sees fit to give me so that I might help a fellow man. To give of my riches even when I am attempting to make ends meet, for I am still richer than many. To give of myself no matter how much money is in my bank account. To give of anything that I can, so that another person may not feel ashamed of their own misfortune.
This section of Proverbs really hit home. What does it make you feel?