I woke up with a song in my head this morning. That isn’t unusual for me, especially because the song was from Pitch Perfect 3, one of many of the songs from the Pitch Perfect movies. I am not crazy about some of the humor in these movies, but having been in the show choir in high school, I live vicariously through the music of these A Capellas, and I like to pretend I can sing like that.
The song was “Cheap Thrills” and the lyrics are talking about going out and having fun and not needing money to have a good time. “I don’t don’t need dollar bills to have fun…I don’t need no money….as long as I keep dancing…” and I was humming it as I let the dog out and got my coffee. Then I sat down to today’s readings and it was all about what money can do to our soul.
Long disputed among Christians is the kind of prosperity God intended for us on this earth. On the one hand, He wants us to have what we need, and live a good life. But our treasure is in heaven. I was listening to “Presentation Ministries” podcast from Fr. Al Lauer, and he cited scripture after scripture, as well as papal encyclicals about the problems with wealth. I also love listening to the encouraging words of Joel Osteen, talking about how God wants us to be prosperous in every way, spiritually, mentally, and physically. Many people have said these two visions of wealth collide. But in the overall picture, I believe it is what we do with what we have, and how we manage our means that really gets God’s attention. Certainly a hefty portion of gratitude and generosity are major factors in this equation of wealth and salvation.
I am not sure why God placed my soul in the modern world, a prosperous country, with a hard-working husband who has provided everything I could ever need. I have not been to seminary, and although I have been spent hours every week studying writers of faith and listening to podcasts, and researching teachings and scripture, that doesn’t make me an expert. But what it does call to mind for me today that as I must go mindfully about my expenditures in the days to come. I will remember that most of the world doesn’t have enough to eat, and some have children who are starving (a pain worse than one’s own starvation). If I did “live simply so that others may simply live“, put back those extras from my shopping basket; spent less, and donated more (time as well as money), I sure would sleep better at night knowing I was a better steward of the resources God had graced me with in this life.