The Almighty Dollar :
Hurricanes are not match
Hurricane Matthew, the biggest scare of 2016! At least here in Florida. People all along the coastline were urged to evacuate as President Obama declared a “state of emergency” for the Sunshine State. Reaching the status of a category 5 HURRICANE, by the time it struck Southern FL. It was still labeled a category 4. Wind speed was clocked in at over 140mph in some places as trees & power lines were ripped down while Matthew’s temper raged on. By this time, the death toll is approximately 852 known deaths! (And, unfortunately, that is only what they’ve discovered thus far!) The entire state, especially the eastern coastline, is holding their breath as Matthew moves North.
Thankfully, here in the Orlando area, we weren’t affected too bad – not nearly as bad as was predicted. We all expected the worst! I can remember flocks of people congestion gas stations & grocery stores. This was no little, rain storm forecast; this was not a light warning – this was real! However, by some saving grace, we were spared. Aside from some tree limbs tossed throughout the city & a few telephone lines needing repair, a power outage is the only major concern here in Central Florida. (600,000+ without power in Central Florida & 1 million+ without power statewide!) Local government that had imposed “mandatory driving restrictions” recently lifted those restrictions & people are back on the road commuting to wherever they are needed or feel safest. But the storm has all but ceased as the rain continues to fall & small gusts of wind taunt the city.
Nevertheless, no sooner than the restrictions had been lifted was a particular grocery store (whom I won’t name & completely throw under the bus) “open for business.” One the one hand, the urgency to act & open-up-shop can be seen from a business standpoint as smart & strategic for being the only store open, providing consumers relief in case of emergency necessities. This fills a need for those in desperation & generates revenue for themselves while other businesses are at a loss & closed until further notice. (Win-Win.) On the other hand, it is seen by a large part of the community as greed & selfishness that they would disregard the safety of their employees by forcing them into work in such risky conditions in order to increase profits. After all, the public was forewarned about the storm with ample time get all that they needed to endure the storm. And it’s not like it’s been a week – it has been less than a day since most stores have closed!!
Well, whether the store is right or wrong, one thing is certain: we are slave – both employee & employer – to the “almighty dollar.” The company opens up to acquire more revenue (whether out of desperation or greed); employees must abide to the orders of their employer or find themselves without a paycheck (which they need); some residents couldn’t afford to stock up on emergency supplies before the hurricane because they hadn’t had the money until today (since it is, for most people, “pay day”); & others, no matter what, simply can’t fight the urge to spend.
As I look out at the people running in & out of the store, staff steadily flowing in & out (a few delightful; most miserable), & the lights on with the welcome sign glowing in the window, while still so many are without power… I can’t help but think of an acronym from my childhood:
C. R. E. A. M.
“CASH RULES EVERYTHING AROUND ME”
Sad, but true. We are under the power of the “ALMIGHTY DOLLAR.”
((Please, comment below your thoughts on this article & whether you feel that the grocery store was right or wrong for opening.))
1 Timothy 6:6-10 – “But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world & we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food & clothing, we will be content with that. Those who want to get rich fall into temptation & a trap and into many foolish & harmful desires that plunge people into ruin & destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith & pierced themselves with many griefs.”