Read His Words Before Ours!
Money is a huge part of our lives. We need it to live! Most of us spend the majority of our waking hours, during the most productive years of our adult lives, working for money.
Money appears to represent so much that is evil in our world.
The rich exploit the poor to gain excessive wealth.
Consumerism and materialism grip so much of the world.
Spending more than we earn, and more than we can afford, on things we don’t need is normal.
We measure success by the size of our house, the make of our car, and the width of our television screen.
The Bible talks about money often.
Jesus preached on the topic of money more often than my pastor dares to.
Jesus knew the powerful temptation that money represents.
It is no wonder that Jesus taught that money is the root of all kinds of evil!
Well, not exactly…
Rather, it is the LOVE of money
that is the root of evil.
And not even “all” evil at that, as is often misquoted!
The Bible never teaches that wealth is in itself evil.
It is not sinful to be wealthy, or have a high income.
However, when we devote our heart to money,
when we love money more than God,
it is an idol, and it becomes a stronghold of the devil in our lives.
God cares about what we love.
The greatest commandment is, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart.”
God must come first.
God must be the one who captures the fullness of our heart and our devotion, not just a piece of it.
The second of the Ten Commandments, “Do not make an idol,” is as equally relevant for us today as it was to the children of Israel thousands of years ago, as they were surrounded by pagan nations worshipping man-made statues of wood and stone. In our modern culture, we worship man-made possessions with just as much devotion, and it is just as dangerous to our relationship with God as it was to God’s first chosen people.
God has been teaching me to trust in Him, not my money.
He wants my full heart.
My husband has always been a small business owner and entrepreneur. Throughout our 25 year marriage, we have known seasons of plenty and of need. Our last season of need lasted for three, long years. We made the difficult decision to sell our large, beautiful home, and move into a much smaller rental property. We sold around a third of our furniture and other possessions so we could move comfortably into a much smaller space.
At the time we felt like we had failed our family,
and we grieved for our loss.
That happened over a year ago now, and we have learned so much from the experience.
God is very good, and He always knows what is best for us.
We didn’t expect to enjoy the freedom of being out of debt. It was a weight that we had been carrying for so long that we didn’t realise how heavy it was to hold. We weren’t aware of the amount of time, work, worry and stress it was taking for us to maintain and manage all of our possessions.
There is a peace and contentment in our lives now
because we have learned much from owning less and needing less.
Money has a way of capturing our hearts
and giving us a false sense of security.
Without recognising it, we put our security in money.
We rely on the material possessions we acquire for our stability.
We put our trust in ourselves, and our ability to supply our needs, to protect ourselves, and be completely self-sufficient and independent.
When we have plenty of money, we don’t need God.
One night, Jesus met a man who found his security in his wealth. He was a fine, upstanding young man; the kind that I would be happy for one of my daughters to marry. He was a good man; he carefully followed the Old Testament law to the letter, and he was very wealthy. He came to Jesus earnestly seeking. “What must I do to have eternal life?”
Jesus knew his heart.
He knew his wealth had captured the devotion of his heart,
so Jesus asked him to give it away.
“Sell everything you have and give it to the poor”, invited Jesus.
Sadly, this rich young man left heavy-hearted.
He couldn’t give it up.
He loved his money more than God.
There is nothing innately wrong with money. It’s just a thing. There are many examples of wealthy people in the Bible, Old and New Testament. God promised the Patriarchs wealth as a sign of blessing if they followed Him faithfully (Genesis 17:4-6). There were new converts in the early church who sold property to share their wealth with the poor (Acts 2:44-45).
The issue isn’t money.
The issue is love.
What do you love?
God is still slowly teaching me, day by day, to love Him above all else.
I can be tempted by the illusion of prestige and comfort that money provides,
but I am becoming more aware that
real security and peace comes from the presence of God in my life.
True contentment is found in His promise to provide everything I need.
Embracing God’s fullness in our lives is rooted in scripture and memorizing His word is vital to our continued growth and depth with Jesus. Tap and hold from your mobile device to download this week’s verse and make it your phone’s lockscreen!