Saturday, November 26, 2011
Saturday Scripture Speaks
All hard work brings a profit,
but mere talk leads only to poverty. Psalm 14:23 (NIV)
Every two weeks I head out to our local Goodwill store in search of affordable used clothing. Yesterday I found a nice sweater for my daughter. For myself, I was able to find a nice pair of slacks and a shirt. Total cost was a whopping $8.00.
Some people might find it appalling to think of wearing used clothing. Some might find the thrill of the hunt good fun. And still others might hate going there but know it's their only option, considering the prices of new clothes these days. As for me, I think I fit somewhere in all three categories. As for the real subject of this post - I have something else in mind.
What I am really talking about is not the used clothing or even the need to purchase used clothing. I'm going to put my neck on the line and pray that I'm not stepping on someone's toes here. You see, to work and earn a little or a lot of money is a good thing. The important thing is that you EARN what you get, rather than have it handed to you with little or no effort of your own, other than maybe reach your hand out to receive.
According to Psalm 14:23, hard work - all of it - brings a profit. Sitting around jabbering (maybe spreading gossip or slander?) brings only poverty. I suspect that having big dreams and doing nothing but bragging up those plans and dreams leaves one to actually do nothing and lose what little he/she has.
Back to the Goodwill store - as I was walking out the door yesterday, I noticed a display of cell phones, brand new ones. It caught my eye because they were all brand new. When I read the sign I was very surprised: "You might qualify for a free government paid cell phone." Yes, the government gives free cell phones to welfare recipients! Not only do they get a free phone, they get free service as well.
Can we still say that hard work brings profit? Wouldn't it be easier to allow the government to shower us with fun things that our parents (and those of us over 40) didn't have until recent years? I wonder how I got by for so many years, driving here and there with no cell phone? Wow.
Proverbs 31:17 says, "She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks." That virtuous woman of the Bible after which so many Christian women today wish to model themselves worked hard. I doubt that she would ever have degraded herself for a handout if she didn't need to. She certainly wouldn't have felt she were entitled to luxuries if she didn't earn them. And yes, I believe a cellular phone is a luxury. It isn't necessary.
"Two things have I asked of You [O Lord]; deny them not to me before I die: Remove far from me falsehood and lies; 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 so profane the name of my God." Proverbs 30:7-9 (AMP) We really should pray for our daily bread - those needs called food, shelter and clothing, not mere wants. When we rob the government, and the American taxpayer in order to have toys, we are profaning the name of God.
My prayer is that each of us do our best to work hard for that daily bread. If God blesses us with more than that, then to God be the glory! Use that extra to bless others. If He gives us less, then to God be the Glory! He always knows what is best for us. Learn to be content with what you have; you'll be happier for it.