So many nuggets to chew on. So many good words and challenging words and thought provoking words. I decided to go with the first nugget that caused me to pause and take notice when I was reading through the chapter.
Verse 9-11: Believers in humble circumstances ought to take pride in their high position. But the rich should take pride in their humiliation—since they will pass away like a wild flower. For the sun rises with scorching heat and withers the plant; its blossom falls and its beauty is destroyed. In the same way, the rich will fade away even while they go about their business.
I live in a land of wide economic disparity and, for reasons beyond my pay grade, I have always lived closer to the top than the bottom. So when I read these words, God’s arrow pierces me with the word to the rich person.
But the rich should take pride in their humiliation—since they will pass away like a wild flower.
I must not get prideful about my wealth and station in life. This says to me that I must not look down upon people of lesser means as if they are lesser people in any way. My lot in life could easily have been their lot in life.
Secondly, I better not be prideful about my life. I will pass away like everyone else and my wealth will not save me from this. My wealth will not save me from death and my wealth will not grant me safe passage into eternal life.
What these words do not mention is any obligation my wealth places on me. However, James does have more things to say about using the wealth we have, but those thoughts are for another day.
Lord, I am blessed in many ways, one being financial. Help me to use my money and resources for God and not merely for self. Break my selfish heart, I pray. Amen.