Today let's talk about the third area over which to guard our hearts: Greed. Let's dive in a little deeper.
Greed happens when we feel that we deserve more and more. Greed says, "I owe me."
Jesus said, "Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed." (Luke 12:15). Why? Because of all these areas we've mentioned so far, greed seems to be the most subtle. Oftentimes greed can go undetected and we rarely look in the mirror and notice its presence. An unguarded heart is prone to open the door to greed.
Later Jesus revealed the lie that fuels greed: "Life does not consist in an abundance of possessions." He knows there there are times when we can easily be swept up into believe that somehow our lives equal the acquisition of more and better things. After telling a parable, Jesus defines a greedy person: it's someone who stores up things for himself or herself but isn't "rich toward God." (Luke 12:21). In other words, a greedy person is the man or woman who saves carefully but gives sparingly.
For Jesus, generosity is what breaks the power of greed. That's why he challenges his followers to give it all away. You see, if you can give it all away, you no longer give sparingly. Jesus' challenge cuts to the heart—whether or not you think you have extra, give generously. We're challenged to give to the point that it forces us to adjust our lifestyles. In fact, Jesus says that if our giving doesn't adjust our lifestyle, it's a kind of greed. Here's what Jesus is getting at—if you're consuming to the point of having little or nothing left to give, you're greedy. If you're saving to the point that there's little or nothing left to give, you're greed.
I know that's harsh. But it's true.
The habit of generosity breaks the power that greed has on our hearts. It's the habit that changes everything.
Here are a few questions for reflection:
Notes from the Staff @The Woods