September 25, 2009

Planning the Future Without God

Luke 12:16-21

God said … “You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you.”
Luke 12:20


The rich man had it all figured out. He would make one more major investment by building a bigger barn, and after that he was going to take life easy.

This prosperous farmer had worked hard all his life, had sacrificed a lot of things to get where he was, and he now felt entitled to enjoy a life of leisure. Of course! When you have worked hard all your life, you should be allowed to reap the benefits.

But suddenly God stepped into the man’s life and called him a fool.

Why did God do that? Not because the rich man had planned for the future, but because he had stored up things for himself without being rich toward God. The man had lived his life with a false sense of security, and in the process he had missed the purpose of his life.

God does not begrudge us riches or retirement. God is the one who gives us all the good things we have (see James 1:17-18). But God gives us these things for a purpose: to put himself at the center of our lives.

We need to ask ourselves, “Am I living up to the purpose God has in mind for me? And am I rich toward God?” In Matthew 6:33 Jesus urges us to seek the kingdom of God and his righteousness. When we do that, we will be rich toward God and we will be involved in the purpose for which God made us.

Father in heaven, help us to find the purpose you have for us, and help us to be rich toward you. For the honor of your name, help us to put you first in our lives. In Jesus, Amen.

About the author — Arthur J. Schoonveld

Rev. Art Schoonveld is a retired minister in the Christian Reformed Church. Before retiring in 2001, he served churches in California, Illinois, and Michigan. Since his retirement he has worked part-time for the denomination and has served as an interim pastor. Art and his wife, Anita, have four children and nine grandchildren.

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