I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise will always be in my mouth (Psalm 34:1, Common English Bible).
This is part 25 in the November Thanksgiving series, “Pass the…” for a listing on the other posts please see the index.
We live in a place and time where we never seemed satisfied. We always want more. We watch athletes and other entertainers fight over an extra million or two. We see corporations moving business overseas because they can make even more money by lowering the costs of production. Over and over again, we see people who have so much never seeming to be satisfied with what they had. They always seem to want even more. Sometimes I ask myself the question, “How much is enough?”
Then, on the other hand, there are those who have very little. Perhaps they have a job, but it is a job that pays minimum wage. Can you imagine trying to support yourself on $7.25 an hour? What about supporting a family on that money? I can’t. Yet when I talk to some of these people, the words I hear often are, “God has blessed me so.”
I read something the other day, even people who live below the poverty level in the United States, on the world economy, are in the top ten percent of world incomes. It is scary what some people have to live on and yet many are more thankful than those of us who have so much.
I am blessed. When I look around at all I have, I know that I am blessed. I own a condo. I have two cars. There is always food in my pantry. I have a job I enjoy, working with some great people. I am far from being rich but I am also very far from being poor. Could I use more money? Probably. Do I need more money? If I am honest with myself, I can live comfortably on what I have.
What do I truly need? I need a place to live, a roof over my head? The church provides me with a house that is quite comfortable. In planning for the future Cindy and I have also bought a condo that we will live in when we retire.
I need clothes to wear. I have a pretty large closet in the parsonage. It is pretty full, and most of the clothes belong to me. I have drawers full of other clothes and that doesn’t include the clothes that are in the condo. Yet, I need clothes but I think I’ve got it covered.
I need food and water. While we hear of problems with lead in local water systems or bacteria in the water supply, but compared to people in places like Haiti, I am blessed to have relatively clean water from a reliable supply. Could it improve? Without question. Could it be worse? Absolutely. We shouldn’t be satisfied with contaminated water, but at the same time, we need to be thankful.
I can pretty well eat whatever I want. I can go to the grocery store and buy many different foods from places all over the world. Some of it may not be real healthy, some of it may be food I don’t like so much but at least part of that is on me. There is food to eat. I am thankful.
I am not overly crazy about casseroles. I always eat at least a little when casseroles are there. I once had a co-worker who talked about the difference between fuel and food. Fuel gives us the sustenance we need to continue to live. Food is what we really enjoy. For me, casseroles are fuel. I eat them because I need to fuel to keep going. I would rater have some tasty food.
Still, I am thankful for casseroles because they give me what I really need. They make me thankful for what I have. My life isn’t always easy, but for what I have, I am thankful. God has blessed me with all I need.
So, would someone please pass the casserole? I need some fuel for the days ahead.
Have a blessed day in the Lord.
Joy and Peace,
Copyright 2016, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved