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Our church women’s circle is studying the Beatitudes. Last night, we discussed:

Matthew 5:6
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.

Luke 6:21a
Blessed are you who hunger now, for you will be satisfied.

Luke 6:25a
Woe to you who are well fed now, for you will go hungry.

Margaret Aymer, author of our text, Confessing the Beatitudes, explained that Christ wasn’t talking about the hungry, but the famished. As a part of Rome, various Palestinian foodstuffs were taken away to feed this booming metropolis. With the best food funneled away to Rome, what remained became even more precious, far beyond what these people could afford. These hungry were on the brink of starvation.

And the well-fed in Luke 25? These weren’t simply people with enough food on their plates. These were the people who took from those who couldn’t afford to give. These were the people who were never satisfied no matter how much they possessed. The gluttons.

When we learned this, you could see shoulders sag with relief. We aren’t guilty because we have enough to eat. We aren’t gluttons.

Or are we?

In a world where so many have so little, the US consumes 49% of the world’s resources. Think we might be just a wee tiny bit justified? Think again. We make up only 4% of the world’s population. Four percent consuming forty-nine percent. If that isn’t gluttony on a national scale, what is it?

What can we do about it? My family focuses on the fact that pulling new resources from our Earth potentially damages the Earth and also takes these resources away from someone else, someone who may have a need greater than ours. To address this, we avoids spending on new items when we can get something used. This means checking Salvation Army, Goodwill and Value Village whenever possible. But before we do that? We post a message on Freecycle to see if someone has what we need and wants to get rid of it. It doesn’t sound like much, but we’ve been able to find science books, picture frames, candle sticks and food storage containers. We’ve given away a refrigerator, a wading pool, two bicycles and scads of toys.

What suggestions do YOU have? One step at a time, we can move back toward God’s path.

–SueBE

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Have a Mary Little Christmas

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