Not long ago my husband was talking to a very wealthy man that he has known for a few years and during their conversation the man shared how hard he works and began to describe all of the hours he puts in every week to get where he is at. How many Americans would say the same thing? Many if not most are all working to accomplish that “American” dream.
Before my husband and I were called into ministry together we were very much a part of the American dream seekers. While living out west we were married, had two children and during our time raising our family my husband went into business for himself. We were on our way! Every year his business became more and more successful. Compared to most, we were rich! Before we left to go into ministry for the Lord we lived in a very well to do community. We owned a three car garage two story “builders” model mountain view home complete with four bedrooms on the 2nd level and an office on the first level. The “master” suite was quite roomy with a sitting room and fireplace. The master bath included a jacuzzi tub and a walk in shower with a mountain view. Our kitchen had a beautiful view of the pebble-tech in-ground swimming pool along with a built in water fall. According to many we’d accomplished one of the most sought after lifestyles by men and women all over the world, and we did it well before the age of 50. But yet, something was missing.
If you’ve been led to believe that “money” makes you happy, I have some news for you: Nothing could be farther from the truth. Don’t get me wrong, “having” money is not wrong, but the Bible does clearly say that “the LOVE of money is the ROOT of all evil” 1 Timothy 6;10. When our goal of “making” money becomes more important than anything else that is when we find ourselves in danger of the “love” of money, it then becomes an idol. When this happens, we are opening the door to a very unhappy and empty life. A life void of “real” happiness, joy and peace. Loving money more than anything else can ruin a family and end a marriage. It can even cause health issues. So what is the “first” clue that making money is the most important goal in your life? Giving, or the lack of. You see when we “love” money we no longer see the importance of helping others we begin to be “afraid” of losing it, so we keep it all for ourselves. For those of us who attend church, it can keep us from obeying God when it comes to giving “Tithes” and offerings. We begin to adopt the mindset of “I work hard for my money!” This same kind of thinking was recorded in the Bible even before Jesus was born: “I have achieved this wealth with my own strength and energy” But God himself says to be “careful” with this kind of thinking: “But that is the time to be careful! Beware that in your plenty you do not forget the Lord your God and disobey his commands, regulations and decree’s that I am giving you today. For when you have become full and prosperous and have built fine homes to live in, and when your flocks and herds have become very large and your silver and gold have multiplied along with everything else, be careful! Do not become proud at that time and forget the Lord your God who rescued you from slavery in the land of Egypt. …He did this so you would never say to yourself, “I have achieved this wealth with my own strength and energy.” Remember the Lord your God. HE IS THE ONE WHO GIVES YOU POWER TO BE SUCCESSFUL in order to fulfill the covenant he confirmed to your ancestors with an oath.” Deuteronomy 8:11-18
One main point I am attempting to make here is this: It is NOT evil to make money. It is NOT evil to work hard and become rich! When we get in trouble is when we FORGET that God himself has given us that gift or talent to become wealthy! And that “wealth” is not only for you to be blessed but to bless others with it (not just your family). God spoke to Abraham and said “I have blessed you so that you will be a blessing” Abraham who was very wealthy paid “tithes” to Melchizedek, a priest of God recorded in Genesis 14:18-20 also in Hebrews 7:6. “And all that YOU have GIVEN me, I will surely GIVE A TENTH (tithe, meaning 10% of all you make or acquire) unto thee” is what Jacob promised to God in Genesis 28:22. Later the Mosaic law spoke of the “tithe” in Leviticus 27:30-32. “Honor the LORD with your substance (money, abundance) and the firstfruits of all your increase” Proverbs 3:9.
If what I’ve shared with you has gotten your attention and you’re seriously interested in learning more, read about the “BLESSINGS” that follow those who choose to obey God recorded in Deuteronomy chapter 28. You see there is a “law” in place. It’s very much like the laws of gravity: “What goes up, must come down” The law of “sowing and reaping” (giving and receiving) also apply: When you sow seed into the ground you will reap a harvest. When you “give” back what God has blessed you with, He makes sure that you get more. One scripture says, “He that gives to the poor lends to the Lord and that which he has given, God will pay him back again.” Proverbs 19:17 He has not put his promises and commandments in His word to make us feel bad. He’s had them recorded for us to learn from them. To understand where our life, gifts, talents and the ability to make money come from: Him. When we do this we will truly be “Set for Life!”
“...for then you will make your way prosperous and then you will have good success…” Joshua 1:8