Thursday, July 29, 2010

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Today’s text

Luke 12:16-21

Then he told them a parable, 'There was once a rich man who, having had a good harvest from his land, thought to himself, "What am I to do? I have not enough room to store my crops." Then he said, "This is what I will do: I will pull down my barns and build bigger ones, and store all my grain and my goods in them, and I will say to my soul: My soul, you have plenty of good things laid by for many years to come; take things easy, eat, drink, have a good time." But God said to him, "Fool! This very night the demand will be made for your soul; and this hoard of yours, whose will it be then?" So it is when someone stores up treasure for himself instead of becoming rich in the sight of God.'


‘The demand will be made for your soul.’ It sounds grave, the facing of death. Truth is the demand for one’s soul occurs daily.

It is a banal occurrence. It happens quietly in the course of the common and average. The demand for our soul is whispered in each encounter with every person in all circumstances. Most often we fail to hear it.

The manner in which we meet the final demand for our soul, when we face our demise, depends entirely upon on whether we have heard and responded to this whisper--and sought the wealth of God’s unfailing presence.

So what is the condition of my soul, O Lord? How well am I? Am I ready for what comes this day?

Has this soul of mine spent enough time encircled in your Loving Mystery? Have I found freedom rapt in the awareness of your love, or do I dwell in the anxiety of my fears and inadequacies?

Is my soul harried with many things, or do I know myself, my center, the core of being from which you want me to speak and act? Can I live with purpose moving deliberately amid the daily and distracting, able to pause, give, bless, laugh and listen?

The rich man sought his life in wealth and ignored the condition of his soul, dying in poverty. He’d starved the one thing he could take with him.

I know his name: Average. He is the average American. He is me … and most of those among whom I live and move. We are not evil, just busy, and often as not we are wholly out of tune with the condition of our souls. Until, of course, big challenges come, and our souls are demanded of us.

Then we know, and we regret our neglect and wish we’d done something more, paid attention, spent our time a differently, so that we knew how to touch and find the immovable rock of your loving life at the center of our souls.

The day to become rich is this one, now. And God is eager to give the wealth of the kingdom to those who come with empty hands and a willing heart.

Pr. David L. Miller

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Today’s text

Luke 12:13-15

A man in the crowd said to him, 'Master, tell my brother to give me a share of our inheritance.' He said to him, 'My friend, who appointed me your judge, or the arbitrator of your claims?' Then he said to them, 'Watch, and be on your guard against avarice of any kind, for life does not consist in possessions, even when someone has more than he needs.'


Why are you here, Jesus? You clearly grasp the reason that resides at the core of your being and the nature of your life.

Settling family squabbles over money and possessions has no interest to you. You are not defined from the outside, by what others want or expect. Frustrating the expectations and perceived needs of those who came to you doesn’t bother you.

You are not anxious about pleasing them or winning them over with a wise word or felicitous answer to their query.

You quickly dismisses the role of arbiter or judge and frustrates the desire of those you might have “won over’ with a wise or pleasing answer.

I don’t think you go out of your way to trouble or annoy people, although there are other stories in the Bible where it appears that you are dong exactly this. Not here.

Here you are clear that settling fights or offering an equitable solution to a family problem is an annoying distraction that you brush away like a pesky fly.

You knew this did not connect with the substance of your being, the depth of your soul.

Your soul was focused on life, what brings it, what takes it away, of what life consists.

And it certainly doesn’t consist of most of the things on which we spend much of our time and substance.

I think that is at the core of frustration for me on some days. When the day is done I wonder: how much of this day flows from the depth of my soul, from deepest loves and convictions?

How much of it truly satisfies the heart because it comes from or leads to my deepest loves--and the Deep Love who holds me?

How much is done to satisfy expectations or desires foisted on me from the real or perceived expectations of others, expectations I sometimes take on even when they distract from the deepest substance of my soul, from being the person I am, the one you call me to be?

Today, Jesus, let me be true to the substance of my soul. I hunger to be so clear about my reason for being as are you.

Pr. David L. Miller