Monday, July 25, 2005

It is Sufficient

My e-mail meditation today struck me enough that I had to post a blog entry in the wee hours of the morning. Here it is:

So it is, we come out of our escapes and retreats from a misguided, foolishly empowered personal experience and into the daily affairs of experience and THERE think from, act from, and rejoice from the Identity as Sufficiency, not as lack; from the Identity as Sufficiency, neither as poverty nor wealth; from Sufficiency instead of the agony of poverty and fear. We walk through the same garden, but this time we walk without the grind in the belly.

William Samuel
A Guide to Awareness and Tranquillity

To live with a sense of sufficiency rather than insufficiency. This is our goal. "Neither poverty nor wealth." The idea is not to be poor, the idea is not to be rich. The idea is to be able to say, "The time I have been allotted is sufficient for my life. I have been given the same amount of time as anyone else on earth, as far as a day goes - 24 hours - and what I choose to do with that amount of time is directly responsible for what kind of life I will make." "The resources I have been given in my life are sufficient for me to live my life in a responsible, compassionate, creative, content, and joyful manner."

It truly is an amazing attitude change when you accept the word sufficiency and go from there.
I have heard it said that a good definition of "hell on earth" is the inability to be content with what one has and always wanting more, because there's always more. Even for Bill Gates, there's always more.

I came across this "sermonette" from the New Covenant Church of God in Sweden.

Philip Parham tells the story of a rich industrialist who was disturbed to find a fisherman sitting lazily beside his boat. "Why aren't you out there fishing?" he asked.

"Because I've caught enough fish for today," said the fisherman.

"Why don't you catch more fish than you need?" the rich man asked.

"What would I do with them?"

"You could earn more money," came the impatient reply, "and buy a better boat so you could go deeper and catch more fish. You could purchase nylon nets, catch even more fish, and make more money. Soon you'd have a fleet of boats and be rich like me."

The fisherman asked, "Then what would I do?"

"You could sit down and enjoy life," said the industrialist.

"What do you think I'm doing now?" the fisherman replied as he looked placidly out to sea.

My first father-in-law was a rich industrialist and his philosophy was to work as hard as one could and earn as much money as possible. He spent almost his whole life at his job and had little time for anything else. He expected me to have the same philosophy of life. And I dare say this is the belief of the majority of people in the secular world.

But what the world does not for some reason understand is that if we live only to accumulate wealth, we'll never get enough. We'll work more and more frantically until we collapse.

Happiness does not come in the abundance of possessions. We should work to sufficiently provide for the needs of our family and to generate some surplus for the benefit of the poor. But we should not go overboard. Our first and greatest priority is seeking for the Kingdom of God. Let us not, moreover, be so busy preparing for a rainy day that we miss the sunshine! Let the Kingdom be your career and your job the means to provide the necessities of life.

Amen, amen.

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