“Reading the Bible with the eyes of the poor is a different thing from reading it with a full belly. If it is read in the light of the experiences and hopes of the oppressed, the Bible’s revolutionary themes … come alive.”
Jürgen Moltmann, The Church in the Power of the Spirit, 1977next >
Actually, godliness is a great source of profit when it is combined with being happy with what you already have. We didn’t bring anything into the world and so we can’t take anything out of it: we’ll be happy with food and clothing. But people who are trying to get rich fall into temptation. They are trapped by many stupid and harmful passions that plunge people into ruin and destruction. The love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. Some have wandered away from the faith and have impaled themselves with a lot of pain because they made money their goal.
1 Timothy 6:6-10next >
In a society focused on upgrades, it’s hard to truly imagine what it would be like to be happy with what we have. We all want the latest Android, the next laptop, the newest Chacos; everywhere we look, advertisements bombard us with stuff we “need to have.” That kind of desire works like a drug. We obsess over whatever that thing is and work tirelessly until we get it; but once we get it, the adrenaline disappears. We reach a low because the excitement of the chase is gone. Then another upgrade comes out, and the chase starts again.
When we find happiness in God and the things we already have, we can break free of the want-chase-attain-crash cycle. Only when our desire for God becomes bigger than our desire for upgrades will we obtain the godliness Paul describes in this passage of scripture. We will be free to embrace the happiness we find in God and look for ways we can share that happiness with others, too.
Kali Freelsnext >
God, help me move past my desire for upgrades and toward an honest desire for you. Help me be happy and thankful for the things I already have so that I can set my eyes on the things in life that matter. Amen.next >
With the courage to challenge wrongs.
With unclenched hands to share.
With open lips to talk about God’s goodness.
With open eyes to see God in strangers.
Kali Freels is a graduate of the McAfee School of Theology at Mercer University.
Making Space: Fallow Ground