A Christian homeowner and his wife sold their property, apparantly making a nice little profit. In a confusing attempt at mixing religion with ethics and power, they decided to make an offering of the proceeds of the sale of the house to the church, but kept back part of the price secretly, allowing the minister and church to think they were giving all, as many others were doing. Their motivation was simple, they wanted to "keep up with the Jones, and hold onto their financial security at the same time. Either way, the money was their own. They could have kept it all. Their story is in Acts five.
But, what captures my attention most about this story is that they each gave account alone. And, they each died alone. It is a poignant reminder that each of us, regardless of family ties, stand individually as a creature of God in this universe. While God has joined a man and wife, and holds them responsible for the details of their life together, He also has a distinct relationship with each of the partners. This can also be seen in the lives of Jacob and his wives. We hear of the God of Jacob, but Rachael, at least, clung to her father's gods.
Each person has the power within himself or herself to feel either a total connection with the Divine Lord, or to experience lonely spiritual disenfranchisement. None of this should be surprising when we look around us and see that the very earth we live on, even nature itself exalts God in heaven. When we see the trees bowing in the wind, we see the might and majesty of God. Devastating weather is seen as an act of God. The rocks do cry out to the existance of a Creator. As much as I love stormy weather, thunder and lightening, I am shocked at a natural force so strong that it could split trees straight down the trunk, in my yard, all around my house; yet so gentle and discriminating that it could leave our house untouched. Watching the wind rip at our flower lined drive early this morning, I was impressed with the fact that God is with us, Jehovah Shammah. The invisible God is a personal, loving, all-present Lord. The King of Heaven loves us one and all.