Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. 1 Timothy 6:17-18 (NIV)
This piece of glass was not supposed to have that beautiful round bubble in it. It was designed to be a flat piece to later shape into a bowl. That bubble is the result of saying, “Just five more minutes.” I cram as much as I can into every moment which frequently makes me late. In the mornings, I need to leave by 7:15 to get to work on time, but right up until 7:15, I am loading the dishwasher, moving laundry from the washer to the drier, checking on my kiln. I forget that when 7:15 arrives there will be a good chance that I will not be able to find my car keys or I will have to go back to the house for my medicine. Then, those precious minutes added to my morning routine result in tardiness. I do the same thing while cooking dinner. Between stirring the food or checking on the oven’s progress, I read the mail, check my e-mail, start the kiln or feed the horses. Then, I have scorched vegetables and dried up meat to serve for dinner. When this piece was in the kiln, I misjudged how much longer it needed to heat. It looked fine so I left it alone and went to work on something else. Not five minutes later when I went back, it had that huge bubble in its middle. I will probably be able to slump it into a bowl and it will be okay, but I don’t know for sure. Just five more minutes brought potential disaster one more time. I tend to squander my minutes and my money. Good old Dave Ramsey tells me to learn to say no and take personal responsibility. That advice could serve me well in time and money management. Tonight, we went to his Town Hall meeting for a message of hope about this bleak economy. If you go to townhallforhope.com you can hear some of his message. I was surprised that he says we are not in the great depression we are being led to believe we are in. We are not even in a time like some of the greatest recessions our country has faced. His statistics about unemployment, the value of the stock market, inflation and foreclosure are very different than the doom and gloom on the news which he contends are designed to keep us coming back for more. He acknowledged that times are tough, but stated that most of our problems come from fear which is the antithesis of hope. He left us with three pieces of advice if you are struggling with hope: Get up and Take Action, Don’t participate in Loser Talk, and Learn to Give Again. He noted that the best way to get hope is to take your eyes off yourself and help someone else. And of course, Hope, true hope, comes not from money, time or fame, but from God. The economy is uncertain, but He is eternally faithful.