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Monday, September 13, 2010

Hibiscus bloom at Longwood Gardens
Hibiscus bloom at Longwood Gardens

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"Never Enough"

"Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income.  This too is meaningless" (Ecclesiastes 5:10).  "A man's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions" (Luke 12:15).

"Never Enough" boatWhen we lived in New England we were only 40 minutes from the Atlantic so it was not unusual to see  large boats in people's driveways. Boat owners often name their boats and one that intrigued me was a boat I passed frequently named, "Never Enough".  I don't know whether the owner's message was expressing, "There's never enough time to enjoy this boat" (since it was always in the driveway when I passed by), or was the name expressing, "I want a bigger boat, this one is not big enough." (Note: The boat pictured to the left is not the same boat as we saw in New England.)

It occurred to me that "never enough" could very well be the motto of the human race.  At least here in the prosperous west, even during a time that we're told our economy is like the great depression, people have and want more. We're satisfied only for a short time with our possessions. Today's first verse, although from King Solomon some 3,000 years ago, is a timeless indisputable truth.  
"Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income.  This too is meaningless."

Jesus made the statement in the second daily text, "A man's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions."  Wouldn't that be a great message to place on billboards leading into every city for commuters to read?  Can you imagine if it was posted at the entrance to malls! It certainly is a powerful spiritual truth that every earnest believer should memorize and regularly call to mind. 

However I believe many people live just the opposite.  They live as if a person's life consists solely for the abundance of his or her possessions. You've probably heard the phrase, "He who dies with the most toys wins."  Need I say here, that's NOT true.

A bizarre and tragic example of such a fool-hardy philosophy is the story I read recently of a Las Vegas woman who died amidst her "stacked to the ceiling" possessions.  She was reported as missing and four months later her dead body was finally discovered buried among the piles of stuff.

Following His statement about the "abundance of possessions" Jesus told a parable about a man who enjoyed an abundant harvest so he built bigger barns and then felt satisfied and secure in his possessions. He sat back, propped his feet up and said, "You have plenty of good things laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry."

"But God said to him, 'You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?' This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself but is not rich toward God."

From the beginning Satan has tormented the human race with the false notion, "That which God has provided is never quite enough." His crafty lie to Adam and Eve got their eyes off the vast array of trees and plants that was theirs to enjoy; all a gift from God, planted by the supernatural hand of God in the garden of Eden.  These would provide outstanding beauty, needed shelter, and physical provision for all of eternity.

But one audience with Satan and suddenly the single forbidden tree became overwhelmingly irresistible. They no longer saw the vast permissible garden but their eyes were fixed on the one forbidden tree.  As a result they fell for the lie and our fallen human race has been doing so ever since. 

Today let us declare, "Enough."

• Enough that God loves me and has a wonderful plan for my life.
• Enough that Jesus died for my sins.
• Enough that I'm on my way to heaven.
• Enough that I have people that love me and accept me.

We'll stop right here, but we could go on and on and so could you.  Let us rejoice today that God's provision for His children is always more than enough!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily prayer: Father, all I have needed Your hand has provided. Help me to live with a grateful heart in constant assurance that You are more than enough!  Your goodness overflows in my life, so much so, that I certainly don't want to hoard Your blessings, but share them with others.  Keep me mindful of those who are needy so that I can share Your goodness with them.  In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Saturday we went to
the annual "Mushroom Festival"
Kennett Square Pennsylvania.

Kennett Square PA water towerKennett Square, Pennsylvania bills itself as the mushroom capital of the world. Indeed 40% of US mushroom production is from this area and 65% of all US production is from Pennsylvania. Since I was a little boy my favorite soup was "Cream Of Mushroom" and I enjoy mushrooms in a variety of dishes so I was interested in seeing how mushrooms are grown.

Kennett Square PA Mushroom Festival
Here is a mushroom bed. I ate one of these picked right off the top.

Kennett Square PA Mushroom farm
I took a tour of a mushroom farm. A bus took us out of town to the Pietro Mushroom farm which has seventy mushroom houses that grow 20,000,000 pounds of mushrooms a year. The mushrooms are grown in very tightly maintained climate conditions on these beds.

Bowl of Cream of Mushroom ice cream
They had lots of food at the Festival and of course many dishes made with mushrooms, some rather unusual. Brooksyne and I shared  breaded mushrooms, delicious cream of mushroom soup and a portabella mushroom sandwich. But our most daring dish was a bowl of cream of mushroom ice cream!  It was quite tasty (the frozen mushrooms tasted like nuts).

Mark Pulliam at Kennett Square Mushroom Festival
At the festival we met up with Mark Pulliam, a long-time friend who was my supervisor about eight years ago at a chaplaincy job I had at the time. Mark now serves as a hospice chaplain.

Brooksyne with Ashley 9/11/10
On the way back home Saturday afternoon we passed the National Christmas Center along Route 30 east of Lancaster, where our friend Ashley works. We took a mini-tour and were inspired by the Biblical account of our Savior's birth.  Ashley is a college student, dedicated believer, and faithful servant  in our church.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
Click on the link to open and play.
(In some cases you may also need to click again to start the song.)

"Enough"  Video  Chris Tomlin

"My Faith Has Found A Resting Place"  Video  Adrian Pressley
"It is enough that Jesus died,
 and that He died for me!"

"He's All You Need"  Video  Steve Camp  We dedicate this song today to a friend who is going through a rough time and to those who may feel lonely.

He's All I Need"  Video  The Kingsmen

Mushroom Festival

Today's photo of a Hibiscus bloom was taken at Longwood Gardens, which Brooksyne visited this weekend as well. She will share more of her photos from that visit tomorrow.

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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