Below is my script for Pause for Thought on BBC Radio Devon (at 25 minutes and 38 seconds in – I can’t believe I came on after Michael Jackson – Get in)!
Recently, I was watching The Jungle Book with my two year old daughter.
Yesterday we looked at the ‘Elephant March Song’ and what it means to follow.
The second song that got my theological juices going was Baloo’s song ‘The Bare Necessities’.
Most people thrive when they have enough of the right things in life.
But how to determine what is enough is the big question.
What might be enough for one person, is ruinous to another.
Whichever type of personality we are, finding the middle ground of genuine contentment is a challenge. Contentment is not passive acceptance, but in the Christian tradition, it is active trust in God who provides.
Baloo the bear teaches Mowgli to sing his worries away:
Look for the bare necessities
The simple bare necessities
Forget about your worries and your strife
I mean the bare necessities
Old Mother Nature’s recipes
That brings the bare necessities of life
The Bible truthfully & realistically recognises our tendency to worry and stress over all manner of things.
This is not to say that it is possible to have a stress free life.
But that when our lives are seeking to be rightly ordered under the care of a providential God, we can find that contentment that comes from Him, and there is enough for everyone!
That’s why Jesus so famously called out his stressy followers who fretted about the things we fret about: money, opinions, social status, health, food and on and on.
Jesus said, “Listen, do not be anxious about your life…
… And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?
… Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these….
… But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”
He might as well have said, “Look for the bare necessities….”