Sunday, February 7, 2010

Neither Poverty Nor Riches


~ I took this picture in our living room, using Josiah as my model - February 6, 2010

If I had had enough room in the picture, I would have included the entire text of Proverbs 30:7-9; but since I couldn't do that, I'll post it here:

Two things I ask of you, O Lord;
do not refuse me before I die:

Keep falsehood and lies far from me;
give me neither poverty nor riches,
but give me only my daily bread.

Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you
and say, 'Who is the Lord?'
Or I may become poor and steal,
and so dishonor the name of my God.

Recently I've thought more than normal about two groups of people: those who have far less than me (the earthquake survivors in Haiti, for example) and those who have much more. It's been easy to feel compassion for those who are suffering from deprivation--who has seen or heard about the devastation and hasn't felt compassion?--but I can't say that I've felt much compassion from those who are suffering from excess! I wish I could truthfully say that I haven't experienced even a bit of envy when I consider those whose incomes are much larger than ours and whose lifestyles are much grander than the fairly humble one we have; but I'd be lying, and this passage also reminds me not to do that. :)

Here is something that is true: the vast majority of the time, I am so very content with our income, lifestyle, bank account, cars, home, clothes, other possessions and so very aware of how blessed we are in all the other areas of life that matter even more (relationship with God, marriage, our sons, the freedom we have to worship God, our education, health, etc.). But in those random moments when my heart begins to selfishly long for more, this proverb runs through my head and I pray, "Thank You that You haven't given me poverty, and I also thank You that You haven't given me riches! Please never give me so much that I would reach the point of feeling like I don't need You, for that would be a tragedy with eternal consequences."

5 comments:

Sally said...

That is one of my favorite verses. I'm glad God has given you neither poverty nor riches. I feel about the same way, and I'm content right here. I have seen the heartache and strife riches cause, and I surely don't want that, but I also know the hardships poverty brings, and I don't want that either. I'm glad our Heavenly Father supplies all our needs.

Leah said...

Davene, you've made great use of Picassa, using it well for your creative purposes. I got inspired and experimented with the program myself and made a header for my blog.

I've enjoyed the verses you've shared on Sundays along with the word pictures.

Morning said...

A very wise saying. thank you for reminding us of this!

Polly said...

Very wise, indeed!

It is a blessing to not suffer from poverty nor to have the albatross that riches can bring. I've known more people suffering from riches than from poverty in my life, and it can cause some major spiritual battles. That observation helps me cultivate contentment when I see family members who regularly travel the world & dine at 5-star restaurants.

My house and dining room table are, in their own ways, much, much nicer places.

Margie said...

One of my favorite proverbs. I think of this often!