“All the Life I Need”

westchester-fire-03

**Not actual photo of my son’s motorhome**

When we arrived the fire was out but still smoldering. The fire inspector was inside the coach looking for a point of origin and a possible cause and several firemen were still dousing hot spots. It was a mess! the coach was totaled. As bad as it was I stood there thinking how much worse it could have been if they had been out camping somewhere. They were supposed to be leaving today for a Father’s Day getaway and had camping plans for the next couple of weekends. They could have been on the road or camping and been in the vehicle when it caught fire!  Thank God that wasn’t the case. As horrific as the fire was at least no one was hurt. When we left the fire crew was still hard at work moping things up. What a crazy night.

Later, before going to bed I picked up “My Daily Bread: A Summary of the Spiritual Life” from my nightstand and was thumbing through it. It’s a great little book of daily readings, reflections and prayers from way back in the day,1954. I remember my dad had one when I was a kid. I know this isn’t his old copy its in much to good of condition. I’m sure my wife probably found it on one of her thrift store adventures, it was an excellent find.

Anyway I was looking through it when I came across a particular passage that I had marked a few years ago. The reading caught and held my attention. It had to do with valuing worldly possessions over God. “He who thinks more of earthly things than he does of Me, will find nothing but insecurity, trouble and sorrow. The man who looks only for worldly satisfaction becomes blind to the loving presence of his Creator.”                                                                

Now, I don’t mean to get overly religious or preachy on you, but I thought it was a pretty timely coincidence to come across that particular passage after seeing a 40 foot worldly possession destroyed. You have to admit those are some mighty powerful words and they really got me thinking. What kind of man am I? Do I honor my God or am I selfishly hung up on material things? It really disturbed me. Do I really live for God? Am I ‘tuned in’ to Him or do I get caught up in my everyday life experience and become blind to the presence of our Creator? Am I living for the greater good or my own good?  Am I a slave   to my earthly desires? Are you?

I’ll tell you, the more I thought about it the more disturbed I became. I began to wonder how many of my “I need this” and “I need thats” are actually nothing more than selfish “I wants”. I mean what do I really need? What more could I possibly need? Don’t I already have all that I could ever really need? A loving wife and family, a home in a good neighborhood, good friends, my health, who could ask for anything more. Oh, but I’ve got plenty more material things, things I don’t really need and seldom use. I have them simply for the sake of having them.  And still I find myself longing for more always wanting more.

I lay there thinking that there is so much more to life than living in a materialistic fantasy and began to realize that materialism is just a grand diversion designed to keep us from our true purpose. Life is a miraculous gift not some competition or game. We are not here to be better than anyone else or to amass more earthly possessions than others, you can’t take any of it with you. No, we are here simply to be the best individuals that we can. We were created for that purpose and that purpose alone.

I may want a bigger house, a new expensive car or another guitar, but the fact is I really don’t NEED them.  I need to appreciate what God has allowed me to have and all he has blessed me with already. His blessings are numerous and found in the simplest of things. They are all around us to be appreciated and to bring us joy if we learn to see with our hearts as well as our eyes. I tell you I don’t want to be just another self centered sinner trapped in a prison of my own devise, I want to be the man I was meant to be, the person I was born to be, so that one day I can move on from this earth and live happily ever after…

Just a Thought,

JS

 

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One Response to “All the Life I Need”

  1. Paul McCully says:

    Right on. If I can leave this earth without missing television, music, tasty food, drink I’m ready to go . Not there yet but the grip is a lot less. Of my self I can do nothing only God can change my nature so I find myself just sitting quietly under a tree or on a bench and things seem to work better in my life. Years ago you couldn’t get me to sit still for nothing. A wise man once said ” If you can learn to do nothing, right, you will do nothing wrong”.

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