Thursday, January 05, 2006

true riches

Luke 16:11 (NLT) And if you are untrustworthy about worldly wealth, who will trust you with the true riches of heaven?

I’ve been talking about fresh attitudes for the coming year. Today, I am beginning a discussion about my attitude toward money. According to Jesus, my attitude about money reveals not only my heart but my ultimate reality as well.

Jesus tells an interesting story concerning money, and at the end of the parable he makes the above statement. I have thought a lot about this statement in the past. I used to think about it in terms of giving the ten percent tithe check each pay period. I would then consider myself trustworthy with worldly wealth, but now I am seeing more.

First, he speaks of being trustworthy with worldly wealth. What does that mean? I would suggest it means at least what I mentioned before but, more than that, I think it is talking about the other ninety percent as well. How does God view being faithful with the assets and resources that he entrusts to me? How does this relate to how I shop for groceries, or at the mall, or even Wal-mart? What about eating out? Giving to people in need outside of my giving to the Lord’s work at the church comes into play as well. There is more to be said about the “ninety” than the “ten”. I know this sounds radical but I believe that it is important to God.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not going to say that you should sell everything you have and give it to the poor (even though a famous man once said that). But I am suggesting a broader discussion about money as it relates to being counted trustworthy. I am now reflecting upon the amount of debt I am carrying, the rate of interest I am paying, and other choices I make with my so called “disposable income”.

Why am I doing this? Because I want to be given true riches, that’s why. Don’t you? Jesus meant what he said, didn’t he? I believe that choices I am making now are in some way determining the blessings and experiences that I will receive from God in eternity. I do not claim to totally understand how this will be evaluated. I am just saying I believe that God is very interested in my financial choices and will reward me according to whatever He considers to be “trustworthy”. I do not even claim to know exactly what true riches are. I just know Jesus said that there are some, and I want to be in on them whatever they are. I could take you on a journey through scripture and show you a lot more, but then this e-mail would get way too long.

Have you thought about your “trustworthiness” lately? Do you expect to receive “true riches” one day? I am seeing myself grow in this area in ’06. I am excited about pleasing God more in this area. I believe there is one core issue that He wants to settle in my heart. I’ll talk about that tomorrow.


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