Better is a little with the fear of the Lord, than great treasure with trouble. Better is a dinner of herbs where love is, than a fatted calf with hatred. (Proverbs 15:16-17)
The Home Of Little
Prosperity has never been a friend of the righteous. Having riches and enjoying the bounty of wealth is not the problem but when men begin to turn their hearts to seeking treasures in carnal things the home changes. Many righteous men were blessed with material riches. Abraham was a powerful and wealthy leader of a large family. Jacob would become wealthy in his day and at one time Solomon was incredibly affluent with untold riches that marveled the Queen of Sheba. The righteous man Lot was one of the richest men of his day. How a person looks at the treasures of the world is what makes the difference. For most men, seeking the rewards of riches will bring nothing but sorrow and heartache.
The ‘American Dream’ has ruined many a home in the frantic search for happiness in material treasures. Husbands and wives will drive themselves into the oblivion of debt to keep up with the latest, most exciting, new and shiny things of this world and have no happiness in the frantic search for enough. Children are left to themselves as the father and mother work long hours every day of the week with no time to spend with family. The people of God are oppressed with the need to have to latest, up-to-date novelty of a pleasure driven world to the neglect of any consciousness of God. Work becomes the new god that men fall down and worship. The Lord instilled in early man the need to work with his hands but never to the point he forgets the Lord. Services of the Lord are abandoned by families who are more interested in playing with the trinkets of the world rather than communing with the Creator. And to what end? Often homes are filled with unhappiness and discontent.
Solomon knew all too well the dangers of prosperity. When a man spends all his time to give the family the treasures of the world and to make certain the fatted calf is served every night; to the neglect of his own spiritual needs and the needs of the family – tragedy follows. The proverb explains that happiness never comes from the charms of the world but in the contented spirit of a home that trust in the Lord. It is better to have a home that is filled with knowledge of God than to have all the things of the world. A home that enjoys a simple meal of herbs where love abounds is better than a rich home surrounded by the opulence of marble and gold and there is no love. It does not have to have marble and gold. It can be a home where the family is fragmented by the cares and riches of the world and God is seldom taught. The family that is not centered on the Lord is a home that is built on a foundation of sand.
Satan does not have to tempt many people with the wickedness of immorality. He first will attract the soul of the family to gain all the pleasures of the world and as long as they do not think about God very much, he can have his evil way. The devil convinces the Christian the treasures of the world are more to be desired than a home with the fear of the Lord. He will impress upon the heart of the home that having the fatted calf is more important than the herbs of contentment. Satan drives the man and woman to work long hours over many days so they can have all the pleasures of life. All the while the home goes further and further away from the Lord. Instead of love filling the home, hatred and discontent rule the passions of the family.
It is a hard lesson to learn that life is not about the abundance of things we possess. Contentment is having enough to live with the Lord and allow His blessings to fill our hearts with love. Riches can be more or less but the measure of happiness is not ruled by the passion of things but the blessings given to us by God to share with others. The Lord instructs all men to work with their hands so they may have something to give to others. A home that learns the contentment of God will be a home that finds the joy of love.