Faith and Finances
Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.
Matthew 6:19-21 (NLT)
In these times of uncertainty, we see how fleeting the things of this world are. Our faith is more important than ever. I work in the finance industry, educating retirement plan participants. I love my job, but it has been a lot less fun as the stock market volatility has thrown people into panic mode. It is hard to watch our retirement savings account balances, that we’ve worked years to build up, decrease. When we read the verse above, Jesus is not speaking against prudent saving. Rather he is warning us to not let our money be our source of security and to not let our love of money be greater than our love of God.
Proverbs 11:28 (NIV)
Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.
Psalm 20:7 (NIV)
Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?
Matthew 6:26-27 (NIV)
Finances are an area I struggle to turn over to God. Given the fact that the Bible references money/possessions over 2,000 times, I’m guessing I’m not alone. It can be hard to think of our money as belonging to God when we are the ones working 40+ hours each week. I often have to remind myself that the abilities that allow me to do my job were given to me by my creator. Living in the United States of America, at this time, where education, modern medicine, and employment opportunities are available is a blessing that I cannot take for granted.
As God blesses us with resources and talents, it is important to be generous and care for those who are vulnerable. This current season we are in gives us many opportunities to be the hands and feet of Jesus. People are hurting… physically, financially, emotionally, and spiritually. Whether it be time, talent or treasure, we are called to give to others.
Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.
James 1:27 (NLT)
The Bible's view of finances is the complete opposite of the world view. As Madonna sang, “We are living in a material world.” (Yes, I am a child of the 80s.) Consumerism and accumulation of possessions are encouraged and glorified everywhere you turn. It has never been so easy to spend our money. We don’t even need to leave our home. Click add to cart and have what you want delivered to your door. How do we combat this mentality? It starts by living with an eternal focus. Remembering that our time here on earth is temporary. We would be wise to store up our treasures in heaven, where our eternity lies. Next is recognizing that everything we have is a gift from God. Gifts that we should appreciate, not waste, and use to generously bless others.