Rabid Fun

John Cowart's Daily Journal: A befuddled ordinary Christian looks for spiritual realities in day to day living.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Wheels: Does God Like Me Better Than He Likes You?

I hesitate to write about this.

It’s not my intention to upset, belittle, or aggravate anyone as one of my recent diary entries did.

I do not want to cause anyone else to sin, to be filled with lust, coveting and envy, or to harbor resentment in their hearts.

I do not want to trouble the mind of anyone reading my blog, but the fact of the matter is that God likes me better than He likes you.

I can prove it.

Today Ginny and I plan to shop for a new car.

We think God has enabled us to do this.

Back when we were poor, we lived in actual, physical want, lacking many basic necessities of life. We lived with hunger. Back then when I’d go to church and hear some brother testify about how God was prospering him and providing means for him to do this or that, I’d hate the bastard.

And I’d worry that if owning physical goodies were a sign of God’s favor and blessing, and there I stood without bus fare to make it home, then that meant God liked that guy — but did not like me.

I hear tv preachers say that sort of thing all the time, “The King’s Children Always Travel First Class,” they say. “Give and it SHALL be given unto you”, they say. “Send me a donation of cash as seed money and god will prosper you with wealth,” they say, as they flash diamond rings and Rolex watches (which they did not purchase via a special on-line e-mail offer).

God gives goodies, is the insidious message of heresy and liars.

God does not give goodies — He gives crosses.

Jesus, the Son of God, did not own the boat He preached from. He walked everywhere or borrowed a donkey. He ate meals cooked in someone else’s kitchen. He slept as a guest in someone else’s home. The cross He died on was not his own, it was the property of the Roman government. And He was buried in a borrowed tomb — which He returned to the owner in good condition, hardly used, after three days.

Yet the Scripture teaches that He was owner of all creation, King of kings, Lord of lords, the bright and morning star, all the cattle on a thousand hills.

Christ is no pauper.

He set aside His wealth for a reason.

So, what of His followers?

Is it true that the godly get more goodies?


The night Ginny and I had to walk miles and miles after midnight to get home with her as swoll-up pregnant as Mary on a Christmas card, God loved us just as much then as He does today when we are going car shopping.

When we had to gather up beer cans under the stadium in the pre-dawn hours so we could cash them in to buy milk and cereal for the kid’s breakfast that same morning…

When I dropped my last quarter in the world into the payphone to call about that job only to get an answering machine…

When I used a pair of pliers to pull my own tooth because I could not afford a dentist…

When I gave my son the guitar he longed for but did not have money to buy the strings for it and saw the disappointment cloud his face…

When all the kids dashed home excited and waving packets of their school photos, but I could not afford to buy any of them…

Although I could hardly realize it at the time, but the Lord Christ was with me in those days as much as He is today as I shop for a new car.

I hope, I really hope that Ginny and I never face such hard times again, but if we do, I look for Christ to stay just as present with us as He is today. As He was back in our former days of HUD housing and food stamps.

Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today and forever.

Anyone who thinks good stuff equals the presence of God has not understood the Book of Job. Things are peripheral. God gives us what we need — or withholds the things we think we need — for one reason only: to draw us into fellowship with Himself.

If the godly get more goodies, then by that reasoning, Bill Gates must be the most godly man on earth! Whether he is or not, I have no idea; maybe he is; but, if so, it is not because of his wealth. He is wealthy and prospers because those factors give his particular soul the best chance to know Christ better.

The poor, barefoot tribesman who owns nothing more than a loincloth and a sharp stick to grub roots with, lives in his state of poverty for that same reason: because those factors give his particular soul the best chance to know Christ better.

I am where I am, here between Bill and the tribesman, so that I can come to know Christ better. Although I must confess that I like being able to car shop better than I did walking without bus fare.

Fear not! God does not like me better than you because He’s letting me shop for a new car today.

Maybe He’s just sick of hearing me complain about our old car.

Please, visit my website for more www.cowart.info and feel free to look over and buy one of my books www.bluefishbooks.info
posted by John Cowart @ 5:43 AM


At 12:41 PM, Blogger Garden of Eden said...

I agree with you John. Yhis prosperity gospel thing is sickening.Mu mum is heavily influenced by it.

Get a good car John Amrita

At 12:44 PM, Blogger Garden of Eden said...

BTW I created a new blog for my church. You 've been my inspiration.

At 3:08 PM, Blogger Pat said...

Now you've gone and done it again...surely I must be full of envy and resentment over your new car shopping~NOT! Although I hate car shopping, it beats taking the bus.
Do you remember the Smothers Brothers famous line?
"Mom always liked you best". I think that's how God feels about everyone of us, he likes us all best. Sweet.

At 9:22 PM, Blogger agoodlistener said...

Actually, Kathy and I just got a new car, so God now has some quality time to spend with you.

You're welcome.

At 9:30 PM, Blogger Katrina A. said...

AMEN brother...I heard a secular comedian once talking about how she described her parents as a kid. Her dad was Jewish and her mother was a Christian who subscribed to the prosperity doctrine..what I call name it, claim it. ANyway, as a little girl she would tell people her daddy was one of God's chosen, and her mom thought Jesus was magic.

Heaven forbid that become our religion.


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