I’ve been working through accomplishing a personal goal for 2012.  I decided that I wanted to read through the Bible twice this year.  So, I got on the ol’ YouVersion app on my iPhone and found a 6-month reading plan.  Only 59 more days and I’ll be able to accomplish this goal.  In my reading this morning, I came across a couple of very interesting verses – Proverbs 30:7-8.

O God, I beg two favors from you; let me have them before I die.  First, help me never to tell a lie.  Second, give me neither poverty nor riches!  Give me just enough to satisfy my needs. – Proverbs 30:7-8

How often do we pray like that?  How often do we pray not for an abundance, but for just enough to get by?  These verses stuck out to me this morning.  Let’s face it, we live in a pretty opulent society.  (Opulent?  I’m pretty sure I’ve never used that word before…)  We live in a place where we are excessive and don’t even realize it.  I came across an interesting figure not too long ago; I can’t remember where I saw it, and, of course, I can’t find it now.  Basically, if you earn $47,000/year, your income is in the top 2% in the entire world.  That should give us a whole different perspective on what it means to have enough to satisfy our needs.

When I see things that like, I reflect back to my mission trip to Juarez, Mexico when I was at the University of Evansville.  It was over Christmas break 2001-2002.  In fact, we spent New Year’s Day in Juarez.  We worked with Give Ye Them to Eat, an outreach ministry of the Methodist Church in Mexico.  While we were there, we went to the slums of Juarez to build a one-room cinder block house.  By the end of the week, when we had the house mostly complete, it was the nicest residence in the area.  There were people literally living in cardboard houses.  The worst part about it was the fact that 100 yards away was a fence that served as the Mexico-U.S. border, and in the distance, we could see El Paso, Texas.  Trust me, friends, there is a reason why so many try to cross into America – it is a land of opportunity and excess.

That being said, there are still people right in our own city that are homeless, jobless and wondering how they are going to get their next meal.  When we think on these things, asking for just enough to have our needs satisfied doesn’t seem all that bad, does it?  It also helps us understand what our needs really are.  Like anything else, it’s all about perspective.  My prayer today is that I will have enough to satisfy my needs, and that I will have a realistic perspective on what my needs really are.  Will you make this your prayer today as well?

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