by Dan Amos
I’ve been thinking a lot about life and our American standard of living over the last couple of years. With our economy tanking, people losing jobs and homes, it has made me contemplate what God has promised us. He promises to love us, to forgive us, to make us his own, to give us eternal life, to remember our sins no more. He gave us his son who lived our life, never sinned, died in our place, paid our penalty, rose again, and reigns forever more. That’s everything! Is it enough, enough to be our source of joy?
We are not promised jobs, medical care, homes, family, health, two cars and a dog. In Matthew 5 Jesus sat his disciples down and gave them a counter cultural sermon. He told them to forget what they had been taught about anger and murder, adultery and divorce, keeping their word, revenge and gave them the heart attitude they should have instead.
Continuing into chapter 6 he taught them how to pray–simply and seeking God’s will. Then he continued into living his righteousness, for his kingdom and not here, and to not worry about what life brings. If he cares for the birds of the field, how much more does he care for us? After all, he sent his son to die in our place.
We reject the “health and wealth” doctrine some churches preach. That is, a life lived in Christ results in material blessings. Pastor Mark Driscoll lampoons that false teaching as thinking of God as a cosmic piñata that we can whack and goodies fall out. But, I’ve come to realize in some way I (maybe we?) have embraced the same doctrine, just with a lower threshold. In the last few months as I’ve seen my job become precarious and then canceled, people have encouraged me with the thought I will find another, better job. Well…maybe…maybe not.
But, if I find a job, even a better job, is God good? Yes. If I don’t find a better job and we lose our house and our stuff, is God good? Yes. God never changes and if he is good in the good times, he is good in the difficult times. God is good; he always has been and always will be. And if I have God, if I have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, do I have everything that matters? Yes, I do. Is it enough? Is it enough for you, too?