Wednesday, August 2, 2017

what wealth is good for

St John Chrysostom talks to us today about the rich man and Lazarus in A Year with the Church Fathers. And his point is that even though the rich man was very wealthy, he took nothing with him when he died. "No U-Hauls behind hearses" is his drift.

But he uses a phrase that leaped out at me. He said, "Don't rush by the phrase, "he was buried."" And St John is talking about the rich man... but we use that phrase in the creed, as well, and we're referring to Jesus. And the right use of wealth became apparent to me.

Joseph of Arimathea was a wealthy man. And when we think about what he did, it gives us hope and faith for our lives today. See, he took Jesus's body when Jesus was dead, and he honored it. Even though it appeared all hope was lost in Jesus being the long awaited Messiah, still he gave respect and honor to His body. He did right with his treasures, even when it seemed pointless.

We can do the same. Even when we totally do NOT understand what God is doing in our lives. When we lose hope that the job or relationship is going to work out. When we hear that the cancer has returned. When we lose a loved one. We can STILL take the treasure that He has given us, and use it to honor Him.

And then wait to see what miracle He performs with it.

God, thank You for teaching us with such a simple phrase as "he was buried."