Reflecting on Luke 12: 13-21
So, the summer project—which is the same project I’ve had for the twenty-five years we’ve lived in our house—is to finally organize the thousands of pictures and letters I’ve saved through the years. After an agonizing month I finally transferred all my stuff from the garage, to the porch, and now, yes, to the living room.
We can’t eat at the table because it’s covered with my grade-school report cards. Ugh. Why on earth have they traveled with me all these years? And why, I wonder, is the picture of the family of the unnamed hired help at my grandfather’s dairy sitting where the dinner plate should be?
Sentimentality, said Kafka, is giving something more attention than God gives it. I cringe when I imagine the nameless mother in that ancient picture somehow walking into our living room today and seeing the picture of her family one hundred years ago and saying, “Are you kidding me? THIS picture is more important to you than your present life? Even I didn’t keep that picture, and I actually know who those people are.”
What if this very night my life were demanded of me? I know without a doubt that stuff would be shoveled into the recycle bin in a heartbeat. The table would be cleared, and set with my beautiful china (which brings me such joy in my real life), and all my family and friends would gather around it. We would sing, and laugh, and pray, and eat! And I would die in peace, finally rid of the stuff that was keeping from being rich in the ways that matter to God.
What “treasures” do you store that are keeping you from real happiness?