Full Barns

“But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?” (Luke 12:20 KJV)

Fool? What does God mean by that term? Merely idiot, dense, or unintelligent? Perhaps. At the very least it does not seem smart to store up treasures for yourself in the here and now. But does not God look at the heart of man (see 1 Samuel 16:7)? Is it possible that this was way more than not smart actions, but that these actions reflected what was fundamental about a bent heart? If Psalms 14:1 is accurate in it’s means of defining a fool by actually defining him by the contents of his heart rather than his actions or his mental capacity, and what we bring forth is much more telling about our heart than our ability to manage (see Luke 6:45); then what is God actually condemning here?

Hold that thought for a minute. What is it about human nature that makes us work? A need for our future security. If we have been through rough times and we do not want to repeat those rough times, we get to work like the squirrels knowing that another winter is coming and we had better have enough nuts to last through the next long cold winter. Consider one of the most famous Psalms. Psalms 23. The one that starts off about lying down in green pastures and being beside still waters. Have you ever watched animals that graze? What makes them lie down in a pasture that is actually green? They only lie down when they feel both safe and full.

Could it not be argued that this farmer who had filled his barns had accomplished just that? He may have known rough times, got out there and worked very hard, and somehow managed to fill his barn with supplies for a good future? He was ready now to lie down right in the middle of what he thought was a green pasture. What made this man a genuine fool? The very next verse (Luke 12:21) answers this question with the phrase “rich toward God”. What does this distinction “rich toward God” matter? On the surface, it clearly makes your wealth last longer. One of the biggest challenges the wealthy have is hanging on to that wealth. Yet it is far more real of a distinction than that. You are feeding the wrong layer of yourself. It is like rubbing food on your skin hoping that it will satisfy the needs of your body. Being rich toward God involves ingesting His Word much deeper into the guts of your being to be processed throughout the entire body so that the entire body may be nourished. It is exercising all of your muscles that makes use of that Word thus making the body really strong. When Jesus feeds you, you are more completely and properly nourished and able to feel both safe and full even when no other animal in the field understands that. “He maketh me…” “He leadeth me…”.

“He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.” (Psalms 23:2 KJV)