Monday, June 25, 2018

“Riches I heed not, nor man’s empty praise. Thou mine inheritance.”

Hymn: “Be Thou My Vision” – Ancient Irish

I've never been fond of applause in worship... especially when it is directed at me! I got a standing ovation at a church where I had served eight months as their interim director of music. It made me very uncomfortable; I just nodded and smiled. In my time with them I had tried to direct the attention off myself and toward the One to whom our music was offered -- and it is a rarely-applauding congregation! I know they were simply showing their appreciation; I was flattered, but I was uncomfortable. It was an interim, so we don't need to discuss the "man’s empty praise I heed not" aspect of the hymn-line!

A few summers ago, we took the guided VIP tour of Cowboy's stadium. Christine (our tour guide) did a marvelous job of pointing out various aspects of the grand structure -- JerryWorld. At every stop, she pointed out something that was the largest in the world (it is Texas, after all) and how Jerry had seen to it that only the finest of everything had been employed in the construction - including steel from Europe because he didn't want anything in this palace that came from Pittsburgh!

It was a grand and glorious tour -- worth every penny of the inflated price. I was as oohed and awed by it as anyone else; you don't have to be a Cowboys fan to be blown away by the place. However, I kept thinking that the billion-dollar price tag represented the construction of the world's largest altar upon which to celebrate football... and to display the wealth of one of the sport's proponents.

I admit that I would love to win the lottery, but I'm told you have to buy one of those tickets in order to qualify. I have auditioned for “Wheel of Fortune” and "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire"; as a semi-retired minister, we could use the cash! We try to make wise investments of our resources. But rich? It will never happen; I just hope to always be able to pay the bills at the end of the month! And the empty praise and applause is short-lived and can become a dangerous feeder of the ego.

No, my inheritance is held for me in the Kingdom of God. Thankfully, he doles out that inheritance daily, hourly, regularly. Most inheritances truly become the possession of the recipient when the donor dies. Well, that's not going to happen because we're talking about an everlasting God! And in our case, we don't have to wait until WE die to enjoy the wealth of riches he wants to send us - not monetary necessarily!

"For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory forever."  And as children of God, we are in line to inherit all of who he is!

Meanwhile, I'm guess I’ll be off to audition for another game show if they come to town! :)

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Hymnlines - Hemlines: Get it?! :)

Hymnlines - Hemlines: Get it?! :)