Saturday, November 15, 2008


Have you ever lived in an apartment complex where the landscaping is well done, and the trees, flowers, and grass just seem so gracious and peaceful? And if you haven't I'm sure you've been to a park where the same is true, luscious trees, smooth grass, a body of water with ducks and other birds... you get it, "you've been there, done that". Now as you walk through the well-planned out landscaping you feel comfortable, maybe even refreshed. I felt this this morning, my apartment complex doesn't have that great of a landscape, but the feeling still came to me. But while you are admiring this beauty, these parts of nature created by God (planted and arranged in position by man, but created by God) you like it and you feel comfortable, but you don't own it. You know and feel it doesn't belong to you. It's not your garden, not your yard, not your trees, not your grass. Keep that thought in mind, you're going to need it in a few paragraphs. 

I'm sure most of you own something of value, a house, an apartment, a car. And even if you don't own one, you rent one out and consider it home. Now think about the feeling of possession you have over those things. You know it's yours, you feel ownership over it, you feel free in it. You might even be protective of it, and not want people to use it when they need it (at least not without asking). Keep this feeling of ownership in your mind as well. 

Now in the book of Matthew, the Bible tells us that we aren't to be attached to things here on earth (Matthew 6:19). I don't believe Jesus is condemning  those who own houses or cars, I believe that he means what he is telling us. Thank you for reading... joking. I believe he is telling us to not make treasures out of them, to not give them a value that they don't have. To consider it not as our own but consider all we own to be God's. When Jesus came to earth he had the right to claim it all as his own, he could actually tell everyone to not step on the grass, and to only use the earth with his permission. But Jesus decided to consider all that was his not his own, but God's. He considered himself to own nothing, and have nowhere to live. He lived in hills and camped from place to place (Luke 21:37-38). 

Now back to the park and to your possessions. I believe that in Matthew, Jesus is telling us to feel about our property the same we feel about the park and/or the landscape. To recognize is not as our own, but belonging to God. To share with others what God has given us. To not make treasures out of them, but make treasures out of our passions for God.   


Daniel Coutinho