a possible paraphrase of Luke 12:13-21
Some city slicker from the audience done hollered, “Jesus! Tell my loser of a brother to give me my half of the inheritance.”
Jesus looked at him all funny like, and asked him, “Who died and made me judge over you and your brother?”
But Jesus didn’t wait for no answer. He just kept on talking to the rest of us. “All y’all look out for greed! It’ll sneak up on you when you ain’t looking. Remember, life is more than possessions. Your life is worth so much more than your yearly salary or your pension fund!”
Then Jesus told us one of his stories. We all got comfy, but not too comfy. His stories had a habit of shaking things up a bit!
Then Jesus started talking about the rich fool. “The land of the rich man was doing pretty good. His savings bonds had great interest, enough for him to live off of nicely. He had all the fancy cars, wide screen televisions with surround sound and flashing mood lights and all the latest high tech gadgets. But he soon ran out of places in his home to put all his stuff. So the man thought to himself, ‘I’m going to have to build me a bigger house!’ And he did. In fact, he built a tower, a golden tower. And he put a wall around it to keep people away who might want to take his stuff. Then, he hired people to stand along the wall with weapons. People who would be on the look-out for anyone trying to take his stuff. And he was so pleased with himself then. He thought, ‘Isn’t this great? I can relax now and enjoy my stuff.’ God, though, God had a different plan in mind. God called the rich man a fool. ‘What if I take you tonight? You know, what if you die, what’s going to happen to all this stuff then? Whose will it all be?’”
Jesus eyed the crowd. This was the bit that would shake people. You could see it in his eyes! “It’s pointless to be greedy for yourself and stingy to God. It’s all God’s, people. All of it. I don’t say this to scare you, but to free you. Because you can trust God to do good things with the stuff you have. And if you don’t have any stuff, that’s ok too. God will use whatever you give him – no matter how big or small the offering made. God looks at the heart of the giver. It’s your heart God is interested in. Not your stuff. So devote your life to God, not to the collection and protection of stuff.”