The Paradox of a Plentiful Poverty

“There are two ways to be rich: One is to have much, the other is to want little.”

We’re moving house. It wouldn’t be much of a deal as our new house is only 560 yards down the road, were it not for the fact that there’s 15 of us.

I live in a christian community, a brotherhood, a family of like-hearted friends. We worship and eat together, we go places together, and we annoy, forgive, and put up with each other, but essentially, we’re a family.

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Anyway, back to the quote

Jesus’ upside-down kingdom is full of paradoxes. One of these is how the relative poverty of the lifestyle we have chosen is married to the way we’ve been so richly blessed by God.

A few of us guys are taking our house move as an opportunity to declutter. We’ve challenged each other to be able to carry all our personal belongings to our new house on foot, in only one trip. We’re also allowing each other the ‘indulgence’ of one black bin liner over the shoulder! Needless to say, this is apart from the shared household stuff we’ll be taking with us (a sofa or two, a couple of hoovers, maybe the piano…).

Here’s the paradox

We’re incredibly honoured by how God’s blessed us with the new house, which is pretty large.
Jesus’ way was one of poverty. He didn’t even have a sofa, let alone a piano.
We leave all and travel light, and we end up gaining all, never in need.

Jesus described the paradox with this promise:

“I tell you the truth,” Jesus replied, “no one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age (homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields—and with them, persecutions) and in the age to come, eternal life.”

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