"If it were all God, it would have been a whole lot better."
Why do we work hard? Why should we work hard and save our money?
We work hard and we are not lazy or stealing SO THAT we have money and resources to help those in need. We also work hard to steward and save our money for these same purposes. It is very oppositional to our American Dream and normal American perspective of money and gain.
Here in scripture we are told that we work hard FOR the opportunity to share what we get. This, for me, requires a check to my motivation and my worry.
Am I motivated to work hard that I may earn enough to be able to share and serve others OR do I work hard that I may earn enough to be able to say I've earned enough?
What worries me most when it comes to my work and my gain? Why am I worried in the times when funds are low? Am I worried because it means I will be unable to then give to those in need and share what I have. OR Am I really worried because once more it is going to mean I cannot financially sustain the lifestyle and pleasures I have built for myself?
If I worried more about the former than the latter, somehow I think funds would be low on a much rarer occasion.
The cities of refuge have to be one of the most intriguing things to me in the Old Testament. God commanded his people as they were establishing themselves in the promised land by tribe to each have a city of refuge outside the parameters of the city. These cities were to be a place for people who had killed another to escape. It was not a place to go be innocent and free of guilt. It was a place of protection. Why protect the murderer? These places were for them to escape those who avenge the victims. It was God's justice. Wait, what?
God knows our revenge is always more emblazened and severe. God protects from unequal severity of revenge. The murderer, though in refuge, remains under judgement for his wrong. That is until the acting priest dies. (ps, another interesting reality is that the cities of refuge were always maintained by the priestly tribe. The mission of the cities of refuge should be the mission of pastors, ministers, and followers of Jesus.) Like us, they were under judgement until our High Priest died to free us from under the burden of judgement.
Yesterday, I was contacted by a ministry to my neighborhood (Oak Park/Tahoe Park). The ministry is called, City of Refuge Sacramento. While it is not a hiding place for murders, it is a place to reach into a community to which high crime and poverty is attributed. It is a ministry which attempts to infiltrate in community to make efforts toward this freedom out from under the burden of the judgement.
[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/58339643 w=500&h=281]
CALLING ALL PHOTOGRAPHERS, MAKE-UP ARTISTS, AND THE LIKE!!! I am incredibly interesting in doing something like this, but I am none of these. If you are interested in doing something like this in the Sacramento area, please contact me and let me know.