Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Boasting in One's Temporal Earthly "Blessings" is Pride and Foolishness

Many in the modern western Church have a consumerist mindset. That includes a consumerist mindset in relation to God and the blessings His gives to people. This mindset is not only wrong, but it is absolutely despicable, disgusting, evil, and just vile.

Many Christians love to boast on social media about their blessings. They love to broadcast it to everyone in their circles, and perhaps, wider circles, to show how "blessed" they are. They post pictures of themselves at a family dinner, child's graduation where the child has received top academic honours, or a photo of an expensive dish, with the caption "#blessed".

Most Christians in the west do not understand what it means to suffer, especially the ones who are raised with a golden spoon, and those who live such easy lives, and become smug behind their wealth. Such people seem, at least on the surface, to have everything and are the envied by all, including many of their own church friends: they own their own large home, a successful and happy marriage, successful careers, abundance of wealth, successful and happy children, large circles of friends and relatives who they constantly contact and dine with, powerful influence in their circles, and being well-spoken of among all friends and family and broader circles.

However, such wealth and abundance is just temporal. Temporal. Such things are vanity. Vanity of vanities.

Ecclesiastes 1:1-11 says:

The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem.
Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity.
What profit hath a man of all his labour which he taketh under the sun?
One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever.
The sun also ariseth, and the sun goeth down, and hasteth to his place where he arose.
The wind goeth toward the south, and turneth about unto the north; it whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again according to his circuits.
All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again. All things are full of labour; man cannot utter it: the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing.
The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.
Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us.
There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after.

All such temporal things, that have only temporal value are vanity of vanities. How hard is that is understand! Seriously! 

Those who have never suffered will not and cannot understand suffering. Why? One reason is that suffering is only truly understood by the soul. The Bible indicates that suffering is felt in the soul, as it afflicts the soul:

My soul is also sore vexed: but thou, O LORD, how long? (Psalm 6:3).
For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption (Psalm 16:10).

For my soul is full of troubles: and my life draweth nigh unto the grave (Psalm 88:3).

The soul can be said to be the part of you which is eternal and very core of who you really truly are. It does not really represent your very being. It is your being.

There are some things the soul can understand only through experience. Suffering is one such thing. So, he who has not undergone true suffering cannot truly understand it. True suffering is not simply some difficulties or stresses that occur time and time again. To say that would be an insult to those really do truly suffer. 

Suffering is to face adversity as a way of life. It is constant and often prolonged. It is typically accompanied by deep feelings of not mere loneliness, but despair, sorrow, pain, hopelessness, grief, shock, and bewilderment. It is typically accompanied by the belief that the whole world has turned against one, that there is no God that exists to help one in one's suffering, or that God has abandoned one.

To those of my fellow suffering saints, know this: no matter what people tell you, or what satan tries to say, God has not abandoned you, nor will He ever abandon you:

Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee (Deuteronomy 31:6).

And the Lord, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed (Deuteronomy 31:8).

There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee (Joshua 1:5).

The Lord our God be with us, as he was with our fathers: let him not leave us, nor forsake us (1 King 8:57).

And David said to Solomon his son, Be strong and of good courage, and do it: fear not, nor be dismayed: for the Lord God, even my God, will be with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee, until thou hast finished all the work for the service of the house of the Lord (1 Chronicles 28:20).

For the LORD loveth judgment, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever: but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off (Psalm 37:28).

For the LORD will not cast off his people, neither will he forsake his inheritance (Psalm 94:14).

When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst, I the LORD will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them (Isaiah 41:17).

And I will bring the blind by a way that they knew not; I will lead them in paths that they have not known: I will make darkness light before them, and crooked things straight. These things will I do unto them, and not forsake them (Isaiah 42:16).

Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee (Hebrews 13:5).

To my beloved fellow suffering Christians, God will never ever ever ever abandon you, leave you, or forsake you. He is the never-forsaking God. He is the forever-faithful God. He is the never-failing God. 

As long as you have God, you have all you need. It is all a matter of whether you dare to believe that, in defiance of a world, the flesh and even a Church full of people telling you that you need to have more than God. 

As the Psalmist says, "O satisfy us early with thy mercy; that we may rejoice and be glad all our days" (Psalm 90:14). God's mercy in giving you each and every single breath is that a Christian should rejoice and be glad in, as His mercy is all one needs to be satisfied.

That is why makes boasting in all the earthly temporal so-called "blessings" that one has so foolish. Such boasting is the fruit of pride and thinking oneself entitled to what God has given you out of His grace, and not because it is due to you. Such boasting will bring shame as such things are just empty which can never truly satisfy and bring contentment. All things are vanity of vanities, all is vanity.

To boast about how "blessed" one is because of all the earthly temporal things one has is pride and foolishness, which can and is often done under the false guise of thankfulness.