In Luke chapter 12, Jesus tells a parable of a rich man who had a great harvest. He then built bigger and bigger barns to hold all his gains. He was comforted in knowing he had acquired more than he could use. “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your soul is required of you; and now who will own what you have prepared?’
In recent days, we have heard a lot about “hoarding.” There is even a show about how people try to help others with their hoarding problems. If we are honest, most of us are probably “storing” plenty of things we could do without. Why do we collect things beyond our needs? Some people are so driven to get “stuff” they will even steal to get more!
The recent fall of the disgraced former Congressman, Jesse Jackson, Jr., is a good example. Congressman Jackson was recently sentenced to 30 months in prison for buying $750,000 worth of personal items illegally with campaign funds. Not only will Jackson serve prison time, but he must pay back the money. Unfortunately, Jackson doesn’t seem to have that much in petty cash!
Since Jackson hasn’t paid up yet, the US Marshall’s Office said they would recoup part of the money Jackson owes the government by auctioning off his ill-gotten property. Included in the items to be auctioned are: mink-lined cashmere capes, a fur, a mink-hooded parka, a woman’s mink black jacket with silver fox sleeves, Michael Jackson signed posters, sports memorabilia, and other odds and ends.
Of course, Jackson got his gain illegally, and will be watching from prison as others now enjoy the benefit of his “barns.” Jesus closed His parable saying, “So is the man who stores up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God” (Luke 12:21). Most of us aren’t stealing or committing fraud to fill our barns with things. But it does raise the question…if someone were to confiscate and auction our items of “value,” what would they find? Things that were used for God’s glory? Or barns stuffed beyond our needs?
I’m thinking I might need a little “spring” cleaning this fall! How about you?