Possessions Delude the Human Heart..

” Possessions Delude the human heart into believing that they provide Security and a worry free existence, but in truth they are the very cause of worry.” For the heart that is fixed on possessions , they come with suffocating burden of worry. We want to secure our lives through possession; through worry we want to become worry free, but the truth turns out to be the opposite. The shackles that bind us to possessions, that hold us fast to the possessions , are themselves worries. The misuse of possessions consist in our using them for security for the next day. Worry is always directed towards tomorrow . In the strictest sense, however, possessions are intended only for today. It is precisely the securing of tomorrow that makes me so insecure today. ” Today’s trouble is enough for today” ( Matthew 6:34b). ”

This is a quote from Dietrich Bonhoeffer. From his book ” God is in the Manger: a reflection on Advent and Christmas”

It really is too bad Bonhoeffer was Lutheran, he would have made a great Franciscan !

Bonhoeffer has been requisite reading for many who enter the religious life, and with good reason. He is a one of the time honored great theologians. There are a few differences in Bonhoeffer’s theology and Franciscan theology. That being that in the reading one might seem to believe that one should worry about today s possessions and leave tomorrow into God’s hands. Of course, St. Francis did not want any but the most austere level of possessions for daily life and to rely on God for everything.

I believe it was also Bonhoeffer who also correctly said that ….. The hole in ones heart is the absence of God , which the world attempts to fill with possessions.

In the Franciscan view, possessions are a trust. Something we are blessed with from God, given to us to use for our needs ( not desires) and then to be passed on to our brothers and sisters, or to be used for their good. We exercise a detachment from material goods and possessions in order that we are free to serve God, in our fellow brothers and sisters.

Poverty that is part of the evangelical counsels ( Poverty, Chastity and Obedience) is not the poverty that is forced upon people. The subjugated poverty, with no choice, is not what we mean. It is the poverty of choice. We choose the blessings of poverty to be free to serve God as we are able and are called.

There are basic universal human rights that include life, liberty, free access to clean water, free access to education,freedom of faith and conscience and free access to medical care. These are things that every human has the right to. These are the things that set people free to worship God and to serve Him in our brothers and sisters.

Consider the poverty of your own heart…. and then give that heart back to God.

May God give you the gift of His peace !


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