Want to Be Rich? Then Leave it Alone.

I was teaching the parable of the rich fool this past week in our Wednesday night service, and then this morning I came across this releated quote. It seems that this week I should be  considering what it means to be rich, and so of course it’s only right that I share it with you.

A man is rich in proportion to the things he can afford to let alone. – Henry David Thoreau, American Author

Being rich is about being focused on the right things, and not being focused on the wrong things. Today’s quote is NOT from the Bible but it is wise nonethless. If our focus is on our stuff, and how much we have, and how much we don’t have, then we will never be happy. Don’t get me wrong, it’s fine to have stuff and to live comfortably, but that should not define who we are. Jesus teaches in Luke 12 to “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions”.

In the parable of the rich fool, Jesus does not condemn the man for being prosperous, He condemns him for being greedy. Rather than thanking God for his abundance, and then sharing with those in need, he devised a plan to keep everything for himself. He completely missed the mark, loving himself more than anything.  Had he focused on loving God above all and his neighbor as himself, he could have enjoyed his prosperity while at the same time making the lives of those around him better.

The lesson: we should focus on being rich in the things of God, and God will provide everything else. And should our souls be required of us, then we can enter The Kingdom with confidence. What do you think?


Want to Be Rich? Then Leave it Alone. — 2 Comments

  1. Lot’s of wisdom in those words, but probably easier said than done. We love new stuff, the latest tech tool or e-reader. The problem is, money isn’t the root of all evil — it’s the love of money. It’s the same with possessions. Are we content with what God has provided or lust over what we can’t get?! Thoreau was right if his comments meant natural possessions, but not spiritual. You cannot afford to leave the things of God alone in this life and expect to have a treasure waiting in the next…

  2. Thanks bro, you’re right on. It’s a matter of priorities and choice. So we choose everyday where to put our time and energy, and by doing so, we choose what to leave alone. Let’s always remember that where our treasure is, there is where our heart is.

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