When it comes to money we use the language: Our money, Mine, My savings, My 401k, Our investments, My paycheck, I pay my bills using my money, My debit card, My mad money, My cash stash. Money is very personal to us. We earned it, we have the right to consume it. Money takes on a life of its own. It has power, allure, with it we can, without it we can’t. We can never have too much of it.
10 Whoever loves money never has enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with their income. This too is meaningless. (Ecc. 5:10)
Money is not alive. It is Amoral. It has no opinions, no dreams, no passions, no preferences. It is our “love” of it that will direct it toward our wants, desires, passions and preferences. God does not have a problem with you or your money. He takes issue with the “Love” of money.
The Biblical command is to love God with all our heart, mind, soul and being. Few things provide more allure and will challenge and compete for our love more than the two things we mentioned above: SEX and MONEY. That’s why Jesus said:
19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (Matt. 6:19-21)
In the Amplified version the last verse (21) reads: “21 for where your treasure is, there your heart [your wishes, your desires; that on which your life centers] will be also.” The way we spend our money tells us a great deal about what is most important to us in life. It shows us what we really love. The world has a saying when it comes to finding the motive of a politician or a large corporation. That sayings is: “Follow the Money”.
Early on in our lives, our hearts get linked to our wallets, our bank account, our money. It is so natural we don’t even struggle. We see money as Happiness, Freedom, Joy, as our provider. Much of this is natural to a sinful nature and there are plenty of models who show us in their daily actions that this is the way to live. We are taught to look good, live life to the fullest, enjoy life you earned it. The vehicle for all this life enjoyment is…Money.
Money is the counterfeit god. We do all we can to serve it but at the end of life whatever is left gets passed around. It has no eternal value. It does not provide happiness, freedom, joy and it is not our provider. I have stood beside the wealthy, stricken by cancer, who have told me they would give away all their money if it would buy good health. I have talked with wealthy couples who, in vulnerable moments, have admitted they were happier when they were financially poorer.
Love of money is a shallow love. It is all one sided. Empty bank accounts replace that love with fear quickly. The Bible mentions money 140 times. God wants us to have clear perspective when it comes to our view of money. God is our provider! He alone puts money in your hands. When we understand that we can learn to handle money differently than the world who does not know God.
As committed disciples of Jesus Christ, Michele and I see ourselves as stewards of money and not owners. Everything belongs to God, not us. As stewards, we take what God gives and we give and use it where God directs us. Our priority is on obedience to God not self-preservation. We belong to Him and He takes good care of us. We trust Him and our bank account shows that we do. We have savings, we tithe to our local church, we support missions and we pay our bills on time. We can do this because God is our provider.
Do you trust God to provide for you? Is money in a place in your life where it does not belong? If your bank account shrinks are you in panic mode? I want to challenge you to do something for next 90 days. Put God to the test.
10 Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the LORD Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. (Mal. 3:10)
God invites you to test him with your finances. For the next 90 days give tithing a try. Take 10% of your income and put it into your local church, the place where your spiritually fed. The language of the passage above is not accidental. God says he will pone the “floodgates (other versions say Windows) of heaven”. The only other place this language shows up in the Bible is when God opened the floodgates/window of heaven to flood the earth with water in the days of Noah. Am I saying you are going to get Rich by obeying God? Yes! Maybe not the hit the lottery way rich but you will be rich in what is meaningful in life and eternity. You will be putting God in charge of your finances and He will show you what a great provider He is.
Are you up for it? You will find that you cannot out give God. He loves you! He died for you and He alone deserves first place in every area of your life. Remember: God does not want or need something from you, He wants something for you.