1986 Aug 3 – 18th Sun Ord Time (Bulletin Letters)
July 31, 1986
“Vanity of Vanities. All things are Vanity!” (Ecclesiastes 1: 2) is the message in today’s first reading. Jesus says in the Gospel, “Avoid greed in all its forms. A per-son may be wealthy, but their possessions do not guarantee them life.” (Luke 12 :13) Then Jesus tells us the parable of the rich farmer who had so much grain he didn’t know where to store it all. (Sound familiar?) The farmer built himself larger bins so he could store his grains and all his goods. Then he said to himself “Relax! Eat heartily, drink well. Enjoy yourself’. “. (Luke 12:19) But life had something else in mind. That very night he died.
Parables are not supposed to make sense; they are supposed to make a point .The point of the parable, what good did all the farmers wealth do him? He lost it all and his Iife too! So it goes with those who grow rich for themselves instead of growing rich in the sight of God. (Luke 12:21)
The parable of the rich farmer is being relived today only on a collective and structural level. For indeed we are in the midst of a bountiful harvest with a shortage of storage space available. Only, not all farmers share in the abundance as some of our best producers are losing their farms and not being replaced. In this time of abundance, many in the world are starving while fewer and fewer people control more and more of our nation’s wealth.
There is an attitude (spirit) amongst the rich in this land, “Relax! Eat heartily, drink well. Enjoy yourself – we’ve earned it. But Iife may have something else in mind for us. In so many ways the life systems of our fragile planet are under attack by our human greed. Our way of life makes questionable the eco-systems ability to sustain us.
Like any parable, this modern rendition makes no sense. But will we see its point before it is too late?
This coming week we will observe the anniversary of our nations dropping the atomic bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan. Will we use this time to put to death the old ways of the world and “put on the new person, one who grows in knowledge as they are formed anew in the image of the Creator?” (Col. 3:10)
KEEP US IN YOUR PRAYERS: I get up early Monday morning and head for Des Moines and the occupation of the Governor’s office. Keep us all in your prayers, protesters, the Governor and everyone else involved with the effort that the Lord’s Spirit be with us all.