"Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."
Luke 12:33-34 NIV
If this isn't challenging to the American Christian, then I don't know what is. As John Berger wrote,
"The poverty of our century is unlike that of any other. It is not, as poverty was before, the result of natural scarcity, but of a set of priorities imposed upon the rest of the world by the rich. Consequently, the modern poor are not pitied...but written off as trash. The twentieth-century consumer economy has produced the first culture for which a beggar is a reminder of nothing." ~John Berger, The Soul and The Operator, Expressen, (Stockholm, March 19, 1990)Imagine how impacted the world's poor would be if each Christian who had more than enough for food and shelter obeyed Jesus' command in Luke 12:33.
Consider carefully how much possessions to keep so that I can stand before Jesus at the judgement day without being ashamed of my obedience to His command.
Lord, this is tough. While I of course affirm and agree with Your command in principle, it is hard to say that I am doing a reasonable job of this in practice. Please help Stephanie and me to carefully manage the money and possessions that You have entrusted to us. Help us to hold loosely to these worldly things and rejoice at opportunities to store treasure in heaven, which is much more satisfying and will keep our hearts close to You.