Monday, October 12, 2009

Two Things

I heard a preacher comment on this passage from Proverbs 30:7-9 (ESV):

Two things I ask of you;
deny them not to me before I die:
Remove far from me falsehood and lying;
give me neither poverty nor riches;
feed me with the food that is needful for me,
lest I be full and deny you
and say, “Who is the Lord?”
or lest I be poor and steal
and profane the name of my God.

The biblical author here is asking for no more than provision for daily needs since he is so aware of how easily his heart can turn against God with both too much and too little. It was a profound reminder to me today, as I was agonizing over the fact that I can't afford to put anything into any kind of retirement plan. Our needs are always met, but we are kept at such a level of minimum provision that I'm always questioning God's care and my worth (of course bringing in the sin of comparison here).

I was also made aware, as I reflected further, that I often pray the opposite: "God, grant me more because I don't trust you." I don't pray these words, of course, that would be too honest. I pray it with my actions, with my worry, anxiety and stress.

Side note: the preacher who brought this text to my attention is fairly well known and I'm sure well compensated; I thought it was a bit hypocritical to challenge his hearers to pray this prayer knowing that by no means would he give up his 401K and book and speaking perks for the sake of this prayer (I'm assuming of course).

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