A church in India

As I was walking to work today, following the masses of people who go to chapel without ever giving a second thought to the job that my colleagues and I do to make chapel happen, there was a guy sitting at the doors ‘begging’ for money. It was another student, and he wasn’t poor.. but he had dressed that way and was begging for money to build a church in India. Now, I didn’t stop and talk with the guy to figure out exactly what he was doing, or if he could be trusted, I just kept walking because I had to be at work.
What got to me was the reaction of the girls in front of me. There were three of them, and my apologies for the stereotype, but they are those girls–you know, the kind who wear only the most stylish name brands, and who always have a cellphone attached to them, and who hang around with about five athletes, and date one, but only for the benefits. Anyways, as they were asked to donate to the church in India, they very briskly walked past (as did I) and went through the doors. Once inside, they began considering how much money they had, and how it was going to be better spent. What struck me the most was the last girl, who had only four dollars, but it was saved for a much more important purpose–going tanning.

But before I could drown myself in the acclaim of being so much more holy, and being willing to give my money to projects like that, one thing jumped out at me: I didn’t give anything, either. The moment quickly turned from being ‘their’ problem to being my problem. I was all of the sudden extremely convicted. God asked me to make an account for my money, and what I came up with wasn’t extremely reassuring.
I spent $35 today on music. I got four really great prices, and these CDs will be great next semester if the whole alternative worship service actually starts like I want it to (I got chillout music – volumes 5-8 of Cafe del Mar). I am doing heavy-duty research on a pack for hiking, which will be a combination of Christmas and birthday money, and will likely cost me anywhere from $79 – $199, depending on what I get. As soon as school is over this year, four of my friends and I are spending about $180/person to take a week-long trek into the rocky mountains. I spent $20 on food this weekend, and if I look at my debit card statement, average about 50 bones a month in fast food tabs. I spend a lot of money. And I honestly can’t even account for where most of it goes. So I’m having a pretty hard time right now justifying a lot of things. I’ve been meaning to sponsor a compassion international child for a while now, and just haven’t gotten around to it yet. I don’t have any lessons for tonight. Just questions for myself.

Have I spent my money well recently?
What of my spending went towards making an eternal difference?
What have I done to make an eternal difference?

I take my leave of the evening, a contrite and convicted man.