“If I Were a Rich Man”

“If I Were a Rich Man”

March 15, 2017

The title of this “Ponder” comes from a song in “Fiddler on the Roof.” Surely no one would question why the hard-working father with five daughters would dream of how his life might be different if he had a lot of money. His meager income as a dairyman hardly met expenses, but he was generous in small ways.

As I watch the movie, I wonder what he had in mind when envisioning being rich. To a young child, a ten-dollar bill might make them feel rich. To a millionaire, the definition might be a billion dollars. And in many parts of Planet Earth, a bottle of water, a sandwich and a warm, safe place to sleep would feel like riches.

First Timothy 6:8 reminds us that contentment is possible if we have food and clothing. I suppose anything more than that could be considered riches. In that context, the father in the movie was a rich man. His family was housed and fed, and they appeared to be somewhat content with their life experience.

I have been thinking about the poverty in the world. In comparison to many people groups, Americans are well cared for – although I realize there are hunger issues in this country as well. The issue becomes personally convicting when I admit that I have far more than the needed food and clothing for today.

It is easy for me to think of what I would do for hurting people if I were a rich man. But unless I share what I have now, most likely I would not share more generously if I had a lot more. I believe the milkman in the movie was actually a rich man. And compared to the wealthy butcher, who lived alone, the milkman had a rich life that could be envied. He had a wife, daughters, a home and a sense of usefulness. I would want him for my friend, but I am not so sure about the butcher.

As I read the Gospels, I hear Jesus commending people who understood riches to be more than material possessions. People mattered to Him – we all do. And our eternal destiny was His reason for being here. Knowing Him makes us truly rich, and sharing His Story – often by sharing what He has trusted to our management – fulfills our reason for being here as well.

Pastor Bill Ehmann

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


So Quickly It Changed

By wvbaptist | March 19, 2020 | 0 Comments

March 18, 2020 A week ago, we were planning for weekend events and worship services. Schools were busy, restaurants filled – life seemed so normal. One day later, it all changed and continues to change. The unknowns and uncertainties are […]

Sweeter With Time

By wvbaptist | March 12, 2020 | 0 Comments

March 12, 2020 Growing up in a small community and church, we enjoyed periodic Singspirations where you could choose the song you wanted everyone to sing. Nearly every time it was my dad’s turn to choose, he would select “Sweeter […]

Wisdom From Ziggy

By wvbaptist | March 5, 2020 | 0 Comments

March 4, 2020 I appreciate the Ziggy cartoon. Occasionally, he really makes me think. Such was the case on February 26 this year. He was looking at the March calendar and said, “Pondering the future can be overwhelming . . […]

Looking Back

By wvbaptist | February 27, 2020 | 0 Comments

February 27, 2020 Recently, I said to Carol, “I wish I could be 30 again and live the next decades with the life experience I have gained.” Obviously not an option, but I thought about what I might do differently […]

Pray Without Ceasing

By wvbaptist | February 20, 2020 | 0 Comments

February 19, 2020 I am probably not the only person to ponder the directive in I Thessalonians 5:17 that is often translated “Pray without ceasing.” Various other translations include, “Pray without omission,” “Pray regularly,” “Pray all the time” and “Never […]

Scroll to Top