Then he told them this story: "The farm of a certain rich man produced a terrific crop.
He talked to himself: 'What can I do? My barn isn't big enough for this harvest.'
Then he said, 'Here's what I'll do: I'll tear down my barns and build bigger ones. Then I'll gather in all my grain and goods,
and I'll say to myself, Self, you've done well! You've got it made and can now retire. Take it easy and have the time of your life!'
"Just then God showed up and said, 'Fool! Tonight you die. And your barnful of goods - who gets it?'
"That's what happens when you fill your barn with Self and not with God."
He continued this subject with his disciples. "Don't fuss about what's on the table at mealtimes or if the clothes in your closet are in fashion.
There is far more to your inner life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body.
Look at the ravens, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, carefree in the care of God. And you count far more.
"Has anyone by fussing before the mirror ever gotten taller by so much as an inch?
If fussing can't even do that, why fuss at all?
Walk into the fields and look at the wildflowers. They don't fuss with their appearance - but have you ever seen color and design quite like it? The ten best-dressed men and women in the country look shabby alongside them.
If God gives such attention to the wildflowers, most of them never even seen, don't you think he'll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you?
"What I'm trying to do here is get you to relax, not be so preoccupied with getting so you can respond to God's giving.
People who don't know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works.
Steep yourself in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. You'll find all your everyday human concerns will be met.
Don't be afraid of missing out. You're my dearest friends! The Father wants to give you the very kingdom itself.
"Be generous. Give to the poor. Get yourselves a bank that can't go bankrupt, a bank in heaven far from bankrobbers, safe from embezzlers, a bank you can bank on.
It's obvious, isn't it? The place where your treasure is, is the place you will most want to be, and end up being.
"Keep your shirts on; keep the lights on!
Be like house servants waiting for their master to come back from his honeymoon, awake and ready to open the door when he arrives and knocks.
Lucky the servants whom the master finds on watch! He'll put on an apron, sit them at the table, and serve them a meal, sharing his wedding feast with them.
It doesn't matter what time of the night he arrives; they're awake - and so blessed!
"You know that if the house owner had known what night the burglar was coming, he wouldn't have stayed out late and left the place unlocked.
So don't you be slovenly and careless. Just when you don't expect him, the Son of Man will show up."
Peter said, "Master, are you telling this story just for us? Or is it for everybody?"
The Master said, "Let me ask you: Who is the dependable manager, full of common sense, that the master puts in charge of his staff to feed them well and on time?
He is a blessed man if when the master shows up he's doing his job.
But if he says to himself, 'The master is certainly taking his time,' begins maltreating the servants and maids, throws parties for his friends, and gets drunk,
the master will walk in when he least expects it, give him the thrashing of his life, and put him back in the kitchen peeling potatoes.