Living Lean

Text: Hebrews 11

Key verse: And even when he reached the land God promised him, he lived there by faith—for he was like a foreigner, living in tents. And so did Isaac and Jacob, who inherited the same promise.”

Abraham, our worthy ambassador of living by faith, introduces an aspect of this subject not often taught in most faith messages. He took God by his word literally and made the move to start over again in a new city where the Lord would show him, holding on to the promise alone. He followed the path God chose for him obediently, he made a couple of wrong choices along the way, as all humans do, and finally, he got to the land of promise. He arrived at the expected end God had for him. A place of not just being blessed, but he became a blessing. How blessed was he?

I am Abraham’s servant,” he explained. 35“And the Lord has greatly blessed my master; he has become a wealthy man. The Lord has given him flocks of sheep and goats, herds of cattle, a fortune in silver and gold, and many male and female servants and camels and donkeys.

Yet he lived in a tent, while his nephew Lot, lived in a house in Sodom. Why did he choose to live in tents when he could afford to build any mansion of his choice?

The Lord appeared again to Abraham near the oak grove belonging to Mamre. One day Abraham was sitting at the entrance to his tent during the hottest part of the day.

His decision to live lean was for a reason. Even his children after him lived in tents also. He saw himself as a foreigner on his way to a final destination that is eternal. This mindset kept him from setting his mind on his riches. Living by faith is learning to live a life of contentment with what you have, knowing that your worth is not defined by them.

Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth. 1 Timothy 6:6

Living by faith is not covetousness, wanting to grab and claim everything others have. It is learning to be thankful for what God gives you daily without strife. Abraham was able to avoid strife with Lot his nephew because he knew there was a greater wealth that is eternal that he would rather not miss.

In the times we live in, where trends are changing values, hard work does not guarantee great reward, and the resources available are getting smaller for the number of people that need them globally, we must learn to live lean focusing on the essentials as God provides, for we have a better place to save for, a better place where the riches will never fade or wear out.

Am l am preaching poverty? No, I am highlighting the need to learn contentment if you must enjoy peace of mind on earth today.

 I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. Philippians 4:12

Paul said he had learned the secret of living in every situation. Have you learned it? When those who should love or call you often don’t do it, have you learned to still be happy and joyful? Hurt and pain from emotional wounds linger because we are seeking more, which we deserve but have not received. Let us learn to live lean on our expectations of others and count it all joy with what we have.

Abraham had a richer quality of life than Lot, he ended well, his generation after enjoyed a godly heritage too. Notice, God did not mind to visit him in a tent, to give him secrets those in glass houses didn’t have.

I leave you with a challenge today, trim down your life, enough of the comparisons, learn how to live lean, and focus on the essentials, eternal wealth that is reserved for you in the heavens.

Live by faith!


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