Updated: Dec 12, 2020
Sitting here this a.m. in our second home, truly a needed respite it seems, but deeply aware of a community predominately known as a retreat for people of wealth.
I guess I have become one, though thankfully wherever we have gone, we have never escaped our roots in terms of those with whom we find fellowship. Roots rich in spirit, both the little "s", as well as being among those deeply engaged in and with the Holy Spirit.
Sure, a "both/and" life of Spiritual and material wealth is possible, though I observe it to be somewhat less probable. The more one has, the less dependent it may seem they are on God and others. That is however untrue, for a life worth living is so much about rich relationships, which is impossible without God and others.
With wealth comes responsibility, which if ignored, isolates us from God and others. "Wealth gap" a phrase with which we have become shamelessly comfortable is a deeply felt place. A place of privilege for the haves, with a growing awareness of imbalance among the "have-nots."
That imbalance is neither sustainable in a free society, nor representative of the Body of Christ. I say that as many, perhaps myself, within her blessed bounds have become too comfortable with their means, while brothers and sisters suffer. I do not desire to be one, though the responsibility is taxing. No pun intended.
Having now lived through a childhood as an outlier, both on the edges of poverty, and now as an adult within two communities of wealth, I am being forced to think deeply about my future journey. With all humility, was God intentional in our blessings due our generosity or was it a setup to test my own self-righteousness? Without going into great detail, we can truthfully say, we have watched with awe, God's blessing!
How do I navigate going forward, in a capitalistic world, which apart from religious piety, actually discounts blessing, with a bias preferred toward personal prowess and business savvy!
Conversations among leaders representative of the relative poor, criticize both privilege and capitalism, though often simultaneously experiencing personal benefit. Perhaps the prevailing winds of our capitalist society have even penetrated the nonprofit sectors, to include our places of worship and spiritual instruction?
Meanwhile, those well-heeled within all these corporate structures, simply offer the less fortunate "a deeper walk with the Lord," tighter family dynamics, a more conservative approach to governance and of course philanthropy...their own generosity however, often bounded more by tax law than gospel!
Let us be loving in our motives and our generosity. We certainly seem always surrounded by those able to mentor. That alone is grace! Thankful for our friends, quite the spectrum, quite the responsibility.