Having and Getting

low angle photography gray sky

But I know a bunch of people who wonder “What’s it all about.”

Some random thoughts on this morning…

At times I come across phrases. Maybe the phrase is noteworthy in itself, or maybe it triggers a thought. It could be an odd coincidence, or maybe not.

There was an old song I believe it was ‘What’s it all about, Alphie.’ I don’t know any Alphie to my recollection, but I know a bunch of people who wonder “What’s it all about.”

Just today I read a meme that in paraphrase read: Some people believe human nature is good enough to use as a guide for morality. —How shocking is that?

In our neighborhood we do have some nice, pleasant folks, but if you ask them most of them/us are honest enough to admit we aren’t perfect.

A few years ago Old Fuzzy was taking some cattle for a ride and one of the axels on the trailer came apart. There he was twenty miles from home with several head of excited bovine and a what happened next moment happened.

He called one of the neighbors and yes, the neighbor could drop what he was doing and rescue Old Fuzzy. He brought his trailer and spent his time doing a good deed for his neighbor (Old Fuzzy). He was offered remuneration but declined any pay for his effort.

That is the mark of a good neighbor, but honestly, those marks don’t come from internal good human nature. We still have the ethic of Jesus’ teaching; Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

As the world continues to turn away from the gospel of Christ, that world gets worse. Only through the embracing of God’s Word are humans elevated.

What’s it all about? In this world, it isn’t about having and getting. Although we have been taught that’s what it’s all about. It isn’t.

Life isn’t about getting a great education so that we can get a good job and get money, and get influence and get all that jazz. It isn’t about what we can get like a greedy dog in the manger wanting more and more.

It was a little girl and I’m thinking she was six years old in third grade. She was on the Steve Harvey show talking to him about something she wanted to invent.

It was a robot that could read a child’s emotions by observing their face.

She called it—a friend in a toy—I think. If a child was feeling lonely the robot would play games with them. If the child needed to talk to someone…

Our world is so messed up. I can remember a time back before everyone went to college; A time when young people found employment in their town. A time when if you asked a young woman what was in her future she would say she and her boyfriend were planning on getting married after graduation and settling down.

Now, anyone who doesn’t go to college is considered a loser, or almost that bad. A young woman who wants to get married, and take care of her home and a family is wasting her life.

For over ten years before my retirement, I would get a ‘report’ from the IRS stating that I was eligible for no Social Security benefits since I hadn’t held a job since Old Fuzzy and I were married.

The many jobs I have held run through my mind, the least of which are teacher and friend. The fact that Old Fuzzy and I produced seven children who are supporting the Social Security system doesn’t count for anything.

Even though the proverbial two children don’t begin to replace their parent’s income when the parents retire and seven children are a windfall that pays for several people.

If we listened to the scriptures we wouldn’t have so many lonely children who need a ‘toy friend.’ We would have moms and dads and grandparents doing what they are supposed to do—in a more perfect world.

If we were honest with ourselves we would step back enough to realize we’ve gotten far away from the Biblical example.

The example that teaches us to love God, to love our husband, our wife, and our children. To be good neighbors and good contributors to our communities.

What would we find if we looked for scriptural examples? Would we have so many family problems? What about the Mommy Wars?

Life is hard. At times prayer is hard, belief is hard, and taking up the cross is hard. One thing to be certain, life isn’t about the having and the getting.

Life is about the being and the becoming.

One, we don’t see as God sees. Two, even when the scriptures tell us something, too often human nature looks for a way around doing what is God-spoken. Three, human nature wants to be rebellious and it has excuses to do what it thinks is best.

Ecclesiastes 5:

8  If thou seest the oppression of the poor, and violent perverting of judgment and justice in a province, marvel not at the matter: for he that is higher than the highest regardeth; and there be higher than they. 

9  Moreover the profit of the earth is for all: the king himself is served by the field. 

10  He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver; nor he that loveth abundance with increase: this is also vanity. 

11  When goods increase, they are increased that eat them: and what good is there to the owners thereof, saving the beholding of them with their eyes? 

12  The sleep of a labouring man is sweet, whether he eat little or much: but the abundance of the rich will not suffer him to sleep. 

13  There is a sore evil which I have seen under the sun, namely, riches kept for the owners thereof to their hurt. 

14  But those riches perish by evil travail: and he begetteth a son, and there is nothing in his hand. 

15  As he came forth of his mother’s womb, naked shall he return to go as he came, and shall take nothing of his labour, which he may carry away in his hand. 

16  And this also is a sore evil, that in all points as he came, so shall he go: and what profit hath he that hath laboured for the wind?