The Parking lot Syndrome

Series: Faith Fulfilled: Forever From First to Last

Link to sermon video: The Parking lot Syndrome - L Siegle

The Parking lot Syndrome

(Luke 12:13-21)


Thesis:  God desires that His children learn to be content and to keep Him first in our lives each and every day.



1.   The title of this message is, “The Parking Lot Syndrome”

2.  One of the interesting psychological characteristics that is a temptation    

      for all of us if the overwhelming ‘desire’ for abundance, or ‘position’

      a.  During the recent holiday season, how many of us would go to the

           mall or to a shopping center and then drive around the parking lot for   

           15 minutes trying to find that perfect space rather than walking that   

           extra 25 feet and getting in, getting out, and getting on with our lives?

      b.  “Did you see that brother at worship today?  I think he was using an

            iPhone 6…Those came out in 2014.”

3.  Since the time of the ‘pandemic’ our society seems to have turned more

      ‘inward’ away from others and more toward our ‘self’

      a.  “I can buy myself flowers, write my name in the sand, talk   

            to myself for hours, say things you don’t understand” (Miley Cyrus).

      b.  “Excessive sense of self-importance, entitlement, need for

            constant attention and admiration”

3.  Jesus was ministering and teaching a large crowd of people (Luke 12:1)   

      About spiritual things when someone (not a disciple) speaks up and  

      interrupts the teaching to try to get what he believes he is ‘entitled’ to   

      have as his inheritance (Luke 12:13).


1.   Jesus had just warned the people about the hypocritical nature of the  

      religious leaders (Luke 12:1-3)

2.  Teaching them what fearing and honoring God means (Luke 12:4-7)

3.  Instruct them of the importance of a life of confession (Luke 12:8-12)

4.  The ‘man’ (Jesus uses the ‘generic word’ here—‘dude’) (Luke 12:13,  


          a.  Old Covenant “law” was very specific (Deut. 21)—the “firstborn”  

                son was to receive a “double portion” the other “sons” inheritance    

                was divided evenly between them.

          b.  This person from the multitude had a sense of ‘self-importance’  

                 that somehow Jesus should just stop everything and deal with his  

                 sense of ‘entitlement’—coveteousness, and envy (Luke 12:15)

          c.   Jesus tells him (and us) that the true meaning of LIFE has nothing  

                 to do with STUFF—what we have, how much we have—it is not  

                 rooted in the “abundance” (perisseuo?) the excess’—the life of the 

                 YouTube/Instagram Influencer….

      1)  For $60 an hour you can rent a fake seat to make it appear  

            like you are on a private jet.

      2)  Taking photos of themselves standing beside an expensive  


      3)  Photoshop photos of where they are ‘pretending’ to be…


1.   Jesus uses this as an opportunity to teach a lesson by using an    

                 ‘illustration’ (parable)—alongside, to place for the sake of  


2.  Some refer to this parable as that of the ‘rich fool’ but the reality is  

           that the lesson can and often does apply to us whether we are rich  

           or not (Luke 12:16-21).

a.  The ground of this man was “euphoreo” (plentiful crop), the  

     root word from which we get our word “euphoric” (v. 16).

1)  There is nothing wrong or sinful about being blessed with a  

     good crop.

2)  God was the source of Israel’s “wealth” and seasons of  

      prosperity (Deut. 8:18; 28:1ff).

3.  The problem was not the abundance, but rather his self-centered  

     Attitude about it.

1.   If this man needed bigger barns, would it have been a sin to do  

     what was necessary to be a good steward of his blessing?   NO.

2.  But his attitude about this “abundance” was that he could ‘kick  

      back’ and enjoy the “good life’—no mention of anything  

      spiritual in his attitude about the blessing he had received.

3.  God had other plans for this man, that he would give account  

      for his attitude—then who would all of this abundance belong 


a.  I have seen so many people, friends, and family members  

     alienated trying to divide up what was left as an inheritance.

b.  Losing a relationship over STUFF’ is so very pointless  

      because STUFF never lasts anyway.

1)  We stand on a piece of property today and say “this is     

     MINE” and in just a few short years, there is somone  

     else standing on that SAME piece of property and  

     saying “this is MINE”

2)  Relationships are far more valuable than anything we  

      can possess.

4.  Jesus wanted this man, and those of us here today to   

     understand where true ‘riches’ lies—with God and not with the  

     temporary physical things of this life.

a.  Contentment is far better (I Tim. 6:6-10,  17-19).

b.  When it comes to STUFF most of us have ‘more than enough’  

      and if we do not have room for what we have….there is a  

      ‘Storage’ place right now the street where we can rent more  


c.   Linda and I lived in Hawaii for just a few years and ‘dear  

      Lord’ just trying to get rid of some of that STUFF to move  

      out here.

1)  “Where did all this STUFF come from?”

2)  You live in a place for a few years and it becomes a  



1.   The ‘Parking Lot Syndrome’ is not limited to just trying to get the  

      ‘best parking spot at the mall’—it is an attitude,.

2.  Do we possess our possessions or do they possess us?

3.  Are we thankful and do we have contentment before God for what we  

     have-the large or the small things of life?

4.  Once we realize the freedom of knowing that life does NOT consist in  

      the abundance of what we have, we are set free to share what we have  

      with others.

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