Amos 6:1a, 4-7 (NRSV)
Chapter 6Alas for those who are at ease in Zion, and for those who feel secure on Mount Samaria, the notables of the first of the nations, to whom the house of Israel resorts! Verse 4Alas for those who lie on beds of ivory, and lounge on their couches, and eat lambs from the flock, and calves from the stall; Verse 5who sing idle songs to the sound of the harp, and like David improvise on instruments of music; Verse 6who drink wine from bowls, and anoint themselves with the finest oils, but are not grieved over the ruin of Joseph! Verse 7Therefore they shall now be the first to go into exile, and the revelry of the loungers shall pass away.
Amos offers concerned warnings for the people of Israel who are living in luxurious, self-indulgent wealth. In their material superiority they have forgotten their obligations to those less fortunate. The warnings of Amos are for all of us. We are all rich in comparison to others. But are we listening to the needs of God's people? Do we hear the cry of the lonely and the forgotten of God's creation? Do we hear the pain and suffering of God's people across the globe?
Riches themselves are not the problem. The problem that has pained God is our love for the security of our wealth and how we use the riches we accumulate. Have we used rather than shared our wealth in compassion for our neighbors, our community, our world? This seems to be the cry of Amos. Can we hear the pain? Will we share the wealth? Trusting in God's will, we can bring peace to this life. God is calling; come home.
Creator God, the giver of all life, enable us to share our blessings with your created beings. Walk with us and talk to us this week. In the name of Christ. Amen.