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Un-stuff your stuff

October 24, 2012
By Pastor Roger Lemke (Special to The Eagle) , Pine Island Eagle

A man settled into his first class seat next to a woman wearing a 20-carat diamond ring. Once they were airborne, the man introduced himself saying: "I'm a jeweler and I couldn't help but notice your beautiful ring. Would you tell me about it? She replied: "This is the famous Klopman diamond, one of the largest in the world, but there is a terrible curse that comes with it."

"Really, what is the curse?"

She sighed: "It's Mr. Klopman."

The true curse of any kind of possession is its capacity to steal our hearts and souls.

A young man runs up to Jesus and asks: "What must I do to inherit eternal life?" (Mk. 10:17). Well, the last time I checked, an inheritance is a free gift. The question: "What must I do?" indicates that to this young man, eternity is just another commodity to purchase and just another achievement on the ladder called success. Finally, Jesus told him to "Sell what he owns, and give the money to the poor." However, the young man could not un-stuff himself of his stuff. His possessions had stolen his heart, therefore he walked away grieving. The Greek word implies that he went away in an "I'm sick to my stomach, I'm going to vomit, nauseating pain."

A newly married man asked his wife: "Would you have married me if my father hadn't left me a fortune?" The woman cooed sweetly: "Honey, I'd have married you no matter who left you a fortune."

Americans suffering from chronic wealth syndromes have a constant drive for the accumulation of stuff: cars, clothes, games, computers, televisions, jewelry, gadgets and all of this stuff cram our homes, fill our closets, line our counters, choke out our living space and collect wooly booger dust balls. I did a little "on-line window shopping" and found a number of things that I could do without. Like a water fountain for a cat, a White Castle scented candle, a cell phone that works under water, a gas-powered blender for the backyard cookout and the most interesting of all: pants that talk. These talking pants say: "Zip Up." It appears that despite the recession, many Americans still have more money than sense.

In a shop 'till you drop culture it is dangerous to print on our money: "In God we trust" because our actions are saying: "In stuff we trust." Do not let your hearts be held captive by your possessions, but drop the chaff of life and grab the staff of life. Human achievements are not the key to the kingdom, only the grace of God makes it possible for the door to open: "Salvation is impossible for mortals, but not for God for whom all things are possible" (Mk. 10:27).



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