best things
 in life
 aren't things.'

Friday Reflection

27th November 2020

'having a lot?'

He told the people,

"Be careful to guard yourselves
 from every kind of greed.
 Life is not about having a lot
 of material possessions."

..... Luke 12:15

"Black Friday,
the Friday after Thanksgiving,
has become so important
to our economy that most businesses
have started it on the Monday
and keep it going
throughout the week.

Consumers can take the time to
In previous years,
the news reporters showed us videos
of happy shoppers pushing their
over-stuffed trollies out of the
stores and into the car parks.

Today it is advertisements
on our phones, laptops, I-pads.
The message is obvious:
The more you buy,
the happier you will be.

Is that really so?
Is our nation's discontent
coming from a lack of material things?

Most of us have more stuff
than we know what to do with.

Our homes are cluttered with stuff,
most of it going unused
for years at a time.

Yet, when we try to get rid of it,
we are reluctant
and think of good reasons to keep it.

Because these material things
give meaning to our lives.
We know we're somebody
when we have acquired certain things.

We know we're important
if we drive a certain car
or live at a specific address
or wear designer clothes.

The world-famous
Howard Hughes,
was once asked by a reporter.
   'Mr Hughes,
   as a multi-millionaire
   with a vast empire,
   is there anything you want?'

Hughes smiled and replied,
   'Just a little more.'

Why then, do we need more things?

"Because after a while,
those things lose their power
to define us,
so we have to buy
something else
so we can once again
prove to ourselves
that we matter.

Advent is the time
of the Christian year
when we are confronted
with our need to make room
for the coming Christ child.

Jesus is coming;
the promise of God
is being kept
in the birth of this Child.
Where can He be born?
Where will He stay?

Quickly we answer,
   'He can be born here.
    He can stay with us.'

Our lives are crowded with things,
stuff that we were told
would give our lives meaning,
but in reality,
only chokes our spiritual lives.

If Jesus
is going to be born in us,
we have to change
our priorities.
We have to make room.

Advent is the four weeks
before Christmas
that calls us to throw out
all of life's distractions
and get ready for
the most real
Reality of All-

"So whatever clutters our souls,
anger, bitterness, greed
and anything like them -
let us throw it out.

Whatever clutters our time-
false obligations,
social pressures;
get rid of them.

Whatever clutters our lives -
things we don't wear,
need or use...
let us load them up
and dispose of them.

"This is Advent.
This is the time we have
to get ready for
Jesus' coming.

"He's a great,
big God.
He'll need lots of room."