Calvin S. Metcalf     Some people come into the world with a tremendous financial advantage.  Their forebears have provided them with substantial resources.  Some folk make the most of it and live productive lives.  Others squander their inheritance by reckless mismanagement.  It is no crime to enter into life with a prosperous endowment.  There is nothing wrong with having one’s life fully funded.  It is a sin, however, to abuse one’s advantage.  To whom much has been given much is required.  There is a stewardship of life which expects us to do the best we can with what we have.  There is such a thing as responsible abundance.  Affluent folk are uniquely blessed with many avenues of special service to humankind.  No matter what our status at birth we have a lifetime to establish our worth. 
     We sometimes refer to people entering life with an abundance of material resources as having been born “with silver spoons in their mouths.”  Perhaps most of us feel as if we were born with “rusty spoons” in our mouths.  We certainly brought nothing into the world.  We had little offered us on arrival and we are leaving very little behind in terms of material wealth.  Nonetheless, we are trying to do the best we can with what we have.  Whatever good, whatever bad, whatever rich, whatever poor, whatever great, and whatever small there is about us, we are primarily responsible.
     The kind of spoon with which we were born need not determine the quality of our contribution.  Just as it is no crime to be rich, it is no crime to be poor unless our poverty is a poverty of soul.  God has created us with the freedom to be the best we can be with the set of circumstances life has imposed upon us.  He does not require us to build a financial fortune.  He expects us to be fruitful and multiply.  He wants the spot we inhabit on planet earth to be productive.
     God desires that we use our creative energies in positive ways.  Whether we come into the world with a “silver spoon” or a “rusty spoon” we still have a purpose.  We start from where we are and move to where we can be by the grace of God.  Neither riches nor poverty is an excuse for lazy living.  Yet, it is not ours to harshly judge the poor or the rich without knowing the circumstances.  We take hold of that bit of life we have been given and pursue the richness of God’s possibilities for us. Our investment is called “commitment.”  His return is called “contentment.”  No matter what kind of spoon from which we eat, we are either nourished or impoverished by what we digest.

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