CAROLYN'S COMPOSITIONS

April 5, 2011

Lenten Study: 7 Deadly Sins—Gluttony #4: In Whom Do You Trust?


CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

LENTEN STUDY: 7 DEADLY SINS

GLUTTONY #4:

IN WHOM DO YOU TRUST?

MONTE W. HOLLAND

INTRODUCTION

     The following study is a journey through Lent, the forty-day pre-Easter season (which excludes Sundays).  Easter’s date, determined by the time of the first full moon after the Spring equinox, is very late this year.

     Traditionally, many Christians use Lent for self-examination and a renewal of their commitment to their faith.

     This year I  chose to do a devotional study on aspects of the Seven Deadly Sins, sins identified by very early Christians as key behaviors separating man from God and God’s will. The seven sins are not listed together in the Bible—each is, however, spoken about in various Scripture sites.

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THE SEVEN DEADLY SINS:

GREED, ENVY, ANGER, LUST, GLUTTONY, SLOTH and PRIDE.

THE ASPECTS OF THE SEVEN DEADLY SINS ARE:

#1 Breaking the Mosaic Law

#2 Defying God or rebelling against God

#3 Acts of violence to others

#4 Failing to make proper sacrifices or worship

#5 Not living up to or reflecting God’s glory (not living as one created in God’s image)

GLUTTONY #4

IN WHOM DO YOU TRUST?

SCRIPTURE: 41 Jesus was sitting in the temple near the offering box and watching people put in their gifts. He noticed that many rich people were giving a lot of money. 42 Finally, a poor widow came up and put in two coins worth only a few pennies. 43 Jesus told his disciples to gather around him. Then he said: I tell you that this poor widow has put in more than all the others. 44 Everyone else gave what they didn’t need. But she is very poor and gave everything she had. Now she doesn’t have a cent to live on. (Mark 12:41-44 (CEV))

Do not keep striving for what you are to eat and what you are to drink, and do not keep worrying. (Luke 12:29 (NRSV))

DEVOTION: Have you seen signs about trust? One sign states We can’t give you credit. We trust Jesus, but all others pay cash. My favorite sign is at the car repair shop: When you die, call us to be your pall bearers, since we have had to carry this far.

     Trust is in short supply today. Airports must scan our bags and bodies for dangerous items. House and car doors remain locked most of the time. Credit checks are routine. An ID card is essential to many transactions.

     Could the poor widow make it in today’s world? I would like to think so. She probably could pick up an odd job or two without references and an ID card. She might have to

sleep under a culvert or in a box, but she could make it. She probably could self-declare her minimal income and qualify at the food pantry. On the other hand life wouldn’t be easy and we would not trade places with her.

     In some ways we should. We need to learn to trust like she did. We need to learn to get by on a little. We need to put God first in our lives. Maybe there ought to be one Sunday each year that is called Widow’s Mite Sunday. On that day your church offering would be all the cash assets you possessed. Clean out your checkbook, your wallet, and savings accounts. Put it all in the offering plate.  That day you would start with a clean slate heading toward tomorrow. If we were more drastic, on that day all our food reserves would go to the local food pantry.

     It is easy to listen to her story and think it was only a couple of pennies. The key is that it was all she had.

     Gluttony is the opposite of temperance. The odd thing is that we eat and consume in general like gluttons. Yet we give “very” temperately. Why? We give temperately because we trust temperately. Is it possible for us to take up the challenge and be more radical like the widow in our giving (in a sense, give gluttonously) and consume more temperately of all the things that God blesses us with?

PRAYER: Forgive me, God! I stray to gluttony at an all-you-can-eat buffet. Help me to trust you more and to be a little less temperate in my sharing with others and serving you. Amen.

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To read the previous devotion, click on: Lenten Study: 7 Deadly Sins—Lust #4: Continual Preparation

To read the following devotion, Lenten Study: 7 Deadly Sins—Sloth #4: Are We Sowing Seeds?, click on: https://carolyncholland.wordpress.com/2011/04/06/lenten-study-7-deadly-sins-sloth-4-are-we-sowing-seeds/

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ADDITIONAL READING:

A Theological Perspective on Child Abuse

Oprah and I: Adoption Reunion Experiences

THE SWEETNESS LASTS A LIFETIME!!! An Adoption Reunion Story

The Rev. Manasseh Cutler Visits Peale’s Museum in Philadelphia

Banish Writer’s Block

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