Pause

What’s on your list?

Your grades, your place on the team, how popular you are, what kind of car you drive, how many followers you have on Instagram?

You know that list — the one filled with the things we use to describe ourselves, to make us stand out, to remind us we are someone.

Except God isn’t really interested in all that. God is interested in who we are without all that stuff.

God, who favors the lowly over kings. God, who says the last shall be first and the first shall be last. God, who is recognized not by a crown, but by wounded hands and feet.

God, who wants us to add to our lists (and lives) words like love, forgiveness, grace, and honesty.

So, what’s on your list?

Let’s see what God may want to add…

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Listen

Someone from the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.”

Jesus said to him, “Man, who appointed me as judge or referee between you and your brother?”

Then Jesus said to them, “Watch out! Guard yourself against all kinds of greed. After all, one’s life isn’t determined by one’s possessions, even when someone is very wealthy.”

Luke 12:13-15

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Think

Jesus has much to say about our relationship with things. And greed is one of the most damaging aspects of our relationship with things.

Greed is a desire for advantage at the expense of another. Greed entices us to take more than our share, leaving less for others. Greed is a sense of entitlement for things. Greed preaches a gospel of selfishness. Greed whispers to us, “More! More! More! The more you get, the better you are.”

Except we aren’t. We are not the sum of our possessions. If we spend our energy, our money, and our time gathering things, we have little time and energy left to gather time with God. Jesus reminds us to store up treasures in heaven; for where our treasures are, that’s what we love.

Greed tell us to love things, to love power, to love taking what we want with no regard for others. Christ asks us to love each other, to love God, and to love ourselves – just as we are.

Laurie Brock

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Pray

Almighty and everlasting God, increase in me the gifts of faith, hope, and love; and, that I may strive to be more completely your servant, help me love as you command, that I may store up those things which are of true value in life; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

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Go

The night before Jesus is handed over to his crucifixion and death, he gathers with his friends to share bread and wine. And he reminds them to love.

“I give you a new commandment, that you love one another,” Jesus tells them and us.

Love invites us to seek what matters – our relationship with God – and reminds us we encounter God in all those we meet.

Jesus knew that love isn’t always an easy choice. He lived it. And he believes in us enough to ask us, “Will you love one another?”

Will you?

And if you will, how will you live that love each moment, day, and choice in your life?

Laurie Brock

Laurie Brock serves as the rector of St. Michael the Archangel in Lexington, Kentucky. She is an active blogger on the messiness of faith and love at dirtysexyministry.com, a contributor (Celebrity Blogger) for Lent Madness (lentmadness.org), and a coach for clergy and laity on using social media to spread the Gospel. When she isn’t preaching, writing, or tweeting, she’s riding her horse Nina.

Things Done And Left Undone: Jesus Calls Us

Ken Medema

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