Sermon – 07-31-22 – Proper 13 – Cycle C – Wertz Baptism
Scripture – Ecclesiastes 1:2, 12-14; 2:18-23
Sermon Title: “Wisdom and Wealth; Trusting God
Vanity of vanities; All is vanity! What is vanity? When we seek more than we need; when we find that material possessions give us a temporary high, that is vanity. We can have a mild case of vanity. Then again, we can easily have a strong case of vanity. Vanity is usually not built on love.
Madeline had an empty feeling. She sought ways that would take away that feeling of nothingness: her usual method was shopping, sometime buying, sometimes just looking. She bought fancy clothing and then had no where to wear them. She bought the overly sweet baked goods that often face us when we walk into a restaurant. After a couple of bites, the rest would be thrown in the garbage. She cleaned her house until it was squeaky clean. Some satisfaction there. The good feeling after cleaning lasts longer than washing dishes or doing laundry; certainly longer than cooking.
Madeline came to her senses one day and said, “There must be more to life than this.” And God said, “Madeline, try me!” “Try you, God?” said Madeline. “Sure,” replied God. “You have wandered from me. The wisdom I gave to you is lost. What have you done with it?” “Oh,” said Madeline. “How does one lose wisdom?” God sighed. “Well,” he said. “When we don’t use something, it usually disappears.” Now Madeline sighed. “Could I have another try with your wisdom? Could you give another dose to me?” God said, “How will you use a second dose of wisdom?”
Madeline replied. “With your wisdom and your guidance I will find someone who needs my companionship. I will find someone who is hungry. I will think what talents are in me that I could be using. I will take a better look at my finances and how I have been using them. I will think about the lives of my relatives, my friends, and the person who passes me on the sidewalk and smiles. Smiling, that is a good way to use wisdom. Is it not, God?”
God spoke again. “You are getting really close, Madeline; close to feeling fulfilled; close to feeling rejuvenated. But, here is a dose of love. Because without love you are only playing with life. With love you will be wanting to give some of your love to everyone you meet. The more love you give, the more love you will receive.”
Madeline started to feel excitement within. “Dear God,” Madeline starts. “I accept your wisdom and your dose of love to get me started. I will begin to trust that you will care for me, while I care for other people and the world you have given to us.”
Let us pray. God, today, we have embraced Ash, child of God. May Ash accept God’s wisdom and God’s love which live in him and around him. May God lead Ash to use his many gifts and talents to form an ever-growing circle of people who want be part of the wisdom and love of God. May Ash trust God to lead and guide him his whole life long.” In the name of Jesus, we pray. Amen