As I was leaving my office not long ago, an amusing sight caught my eyes. Three workers and one supervisor were laboring over a small rhododendron carefully trimming its leaves. Every Thursday, this crew handles the landscaping chores for our chapel, office and surrounding grounds. But while it was funny to see so many adults working on one bush, it was also sad. Kim, one of our counselors, recently shared how much the farmers are impacted this year by the lack of migrant workers to pick their fields. A bumper crop of strawberries is poorly harvested because there are not enough laborers. When I asked Kim why this situation exists she explained that many migrant workers no longer pick fruit because they are able to find jobs that are much easier (i.e. fast-food establishments) with better pay. In addition, fewer workers came north this year because the government is more stringent in blocking illegal entries.
Luke 11:42--But woe to you Pharisees! You give a tenth of mint, rue, and every kind of herb, and you bypass justice and love for God. These things you should have done without neglecting the others.
I cannot find a word that communicates what I am thinking so I’ve coined a new word--imbality. It means an imbalance in priorities; a deficient sense of what is important leading to a misutilization of assets. When four people are working over one small bush we have an imbality. Many of us are familiar with reports of money the government wastes on frivolous projects. Recently, the media reported on FEMA funds meant for disaster recovery for Katrina victims spent instead on luxurious vacation trips and pornography—clearly imbality!
When Pharisees get hung up on miniscule tithes at the expense of treating people correctly and truly loving God, we see imbality. When a church can get thirty volunteers to organize a potluck but only two people willing to pray, we have a spiritual imbality. Why is it that so many families have time for sports, concerts, television and movies but are too busy to pass out flyers or invite their neighbors for an evangelistic event? Our investments should be in worshiping God, in sharing Jesus with those without Him, in training to be Christ-like so that we seek the fulfillment of God’s will in our daily activities. Instead we concede to drivel. We feed our self-centered needs and misappropriate the incredible resources God has given for the pursuit of fleeting pleasure. The logical end to imbality is futility. Unless we wake up soon and understand this, we will spiritually starve in our well-manicured churches!
Only when we continually face the cross are we safe from the danger of triviality and internal hypocrisy.—Oswald Chambers in The Place of Help
©2006 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)