So, have you bought your ticket yet? This week's lotto jackpot is in excess of five hundred megabucks. And what precisely, by buying a tickie; are your "odds" of cashing in on that bad boy? Well, practically speaking; zero! But the "actual odds" are said to be in the neighborhood of one in two hundred million-ish (or so). I know, let's us build a roulette wheel with those same odds, shall we? Each slot will be 1/2" wide, and our marble the normal size, and will nicely fit. That wheel with 200 thousand-thousand slots in it, how big is that sucker anyhow?
Discounting the partitions between slots (because that would make the thing even larger!), I make it a hundred million inch circle. Gee, that would be 8.3 million feet, or 1578 miles? Mr. pi into the picture then, and we get this thing five hundred (and two) miles. . . across? Such a wheel, exceeds the square mile area of most of the fifty states, individually considered. The odds of our marble dropping in (from an airplane maybe?) to your one slot, on the first try are slim-ish I'd guess, and kinda-sorta identical to the lotto!
So we derive a circle, one in which you could drive around at 70 m.p.h., in about twenty two hours (with zero rest stops); sprinting by 1/5th of a billion slots, and you are "hoping" it hits yours? Am I hallucinating over here, why would this (?) make sense to anybody at all? You'd have much much better odds being hit by lightning, while spotting Elvis exiting a U.F.O. And people eat this junk up!
As a boy, I used to speculate with my buddy Gary, "What would you do, if you had a million bucks?". And likely, if you are human; similar talks come to mind in your past. You too, when young did much the same. It's "dream talk", and this (I think) is what drives the purchasing of this state sponsored con-game. Uh, by the way, what were those "dreams" really about anyhow?
Tell me, weren't yours about "becoming important"? Or, wasn't it that "we'd never have to worry about things?" In such dreams then, we are wanting (so to speak) "the room to be great", and moreover, a great-ness; such that we are "free" to be publicly generous, so to be identified, as a "known quantity" type person. We want wealth, "so-that" we can be generous, is that it? So, who is the generosity-cop around here prohibiting such excess today, I'd wonder. Ah, and here we see the rub. We "can't be" generous. . . if it hurts! We desire a financial security, such that giving away, only hurts a little bit, and the loss won't be missed, thank you very much!
Clearly then, something in our thinking has cleanly gone off the rails. As some type of psychological train-wreck, we'd like to have the cake. . . we just now ate! To have the ability (somehow) to retain the wealth, and simultaneously lose it; I wonder why would such "make us happy" anyhow? How come nobody inquires at this door? Or perhaps, what are "the odds" of such a roaring silence, just here?
If happiness consists of giving away a treasure you did not earn (and could not lose); so as to benefit those you love best, what do we thus infer from our use of the word "happy" in this case? Let's ditch the dream stuff for a second, and act as if this is real. If this type of giving and receiving is even a little bit real, what is the genuine article, of which lotto-money is a vague-fuzzy hint? Further, tell me friend, what (by the way) are "the odds" that we already know-and-reject that reality? And offhand, I'd say they are nearly 100%. . . the original sure thing!
Let's imagine a boatload of criminals. With no motor, oar or sail, they are adrift. But the bad news is that they are upstream of Niagara Falls. I'd wonder; "What is the single most crucial treasure they desire? Uh, a rope maybe, some way to make landfall in time; a loyal friend on shore, aware of the predicament perhaps?". Well, something along those lines (surely) are of obviously more value than others we could name. Cheeseburgers, Corvettes and fast girls will do these pitiful sailors N-O good just now. It is "escape" they should focus upon, I'd wager. And for us to fixate on "stuff" in such a situation, means not; that dreaming itself is "wrong", but simply crazily irrelevant.
We have been razzle-dazzled somewhere along Niagara River, I'd assess. All of the precious rocks, rare metals, paper money and art masterpieces in the known universe are even worse than cheese burgers just now. They are ballast! And down, is not "the direction of choice" just now. Our minds are giving us a bogus read-out then? For certain, such a boatload of failures (as us!) zealously coveting money (at just exactly the wrong time), reveals an inability on our part to recognize treasure itself! Danger of the Falls, namely that all too close destruction; clearly trumps all acquisition claims. And we can't see it! The fruit of Eden then, an un-natural forgetfulness, plus a severe stupidity at estimating real value? Yep, that gang of sailors "is us". Our minds are off the rails, and we are unable to notice that, because we use our minds to notice things! That's one helluva big "oops" there.
What those screwy sailors actually require is a friend ashore, firmly anchored to dry land. They need that person to throw a rope with a grappling hook, so to drag their wet butts to safety. They need a second chance at rafting, a new lease on life!
The Biblical reality thus is a consistent linkage of forgiveness to resurrection. The wealth He spreads is to those He loves-best, so as to wipe out the ballast dragging down, The condemnation, and that lawful guilt and shame of our (serial) failure; is the "golden-ballast" in question, and we are unable to notice! Our father Adam once upon a time "flew the bird" to the Almighty, and that basic insanity still formats as yours and my anchor! The way to the safe shore isn't findable inside the boat. But this does not mean that hope itself is dead, it means my brain is! I take no notice of the Man with the hook! That is to say; "I, of-and-in, myself, thus fail". The second chance at life, that rising from the tomb, is the Real Treasure, and he owns it, and He gives it freely, with zero "regrets for it's loss".
Made-lately, a somewhat better sailor by the Man ashore, I too have come to spread a wealth I never earned! Oddly, I find that just about nobody wants it? Yet it makes us happy to bless them nutzo sailors yet out on the waters, with their numbskull urge to acquire a platinum anchor! In His Name, for His Glory, by His power, we keep adding to that happy nation of the rescued-from-water.
The Guy with the hook shouts over the roar, "The sins you remit (in earth) are indeed remitted in heaven!". We then (friend!), spread gladly the only actual Treasure (Mr. Treasure to you) there is; the wealth required for when the boat meets the Falls. Enough with the ballast/anchor collection already, lose that garbage, and pull! The hook Man instructs us "Forgive us (we ask). . as we likewise are forgiving (gladly!) them other bonehead sailors". See? He gives. . . Himself, the only "Thing-ever", worth having. And with Him, comes all the ballast you could possibly ever swallow. . .plus! He, The True Treasure, "impoverishing" His Own account, is granting to the poor wealth, and we the "enriched"- thereby, give-again. . . Him! We give Him-calling, Him-hauling in to safety, Him reconciling before it's just too late! The solitary winner, that ticket to true riches, happiness and truth; have you bought yours yet?
If your mind is working correctly, it remembers time! The clock function is basic to loosing those aboard a damned vessel before (!) she goes over. He's so blasted Good, it's scary! Now, what are the odds of me saying that? Oh, about a 100%; I'd wager. And baby, that's a good bet!