Saturday, August 8, 2009

Money and the Gospel

I love it when I've been thinking about things, and then I see a clip of someone waaaayyy smarter than me, actually articulate through the scriptures, what it is that I've been thinking.
(This is a clip of John Piper entitiled "Wealth is almost always a curse, not a blessing", and whether you "like" JP or not, he is passionate about this filth we call the "Prosperity Gospel")

Money, Money, Money. I hate money. Really I do. It probablly has to do with the fact that it is yet another area in which you have to have discipline. And discipline with money is much more nebulous than discipline in other areas, cause we "need" stuff. Now granted, we are in a place of life right now that we don't have any money. We don't have any "wealth" stored up anywhere.
I am not complaining. We have a house, we have a car, we have food for the week and money for next weeks food. We have clothes on our back, in our drawers, and quite frankly, on our floors, and in our washer and dryer. We have a computer, and a TV, and internet access, a couple of CD players, some MP3 players, and dvd player or 2.
There is nothing wrong with these things, I don't think. I like my computer and my internet access. I like being able to keep up with people this way. I like being able to talk to my sister 8000 miles away, and let the kids Skype with their grandparents whenever they want to.
These are not bad things. These things honestly make me thankful for God's provision, but I still have to be a good steward of them.

The problem as I see it, is that the more we have, the more we want, or "need".
Where is the line? At what point do we fall into bad stewardship?
I always think that if I could just fall into a large sum of money, then I could do so much for other people. I sincerely mean that. But would I actually do it? Would my "needs" out way my goodwill? How would I decide what causes are worthy? Would I just give up and keep it all to myself?

If we came into a large sum of money I think I would like to sell the house we live in, and buy a house with some conveniences we don't have now. Why? Really, there is nothing wrong with my house. I mean there is, but does that matter? There is good stewardship, taking care of the things God has blessed us with, but then there is excess. Do I really need a better house? Nope. My house has 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and living room, a den, a school room, a garage, an eat in kitchen, and a large fenced in back yard. There are things about it that I don't like, and things about it that I need to improve, in order to be a good steward of what God has blessed us with. Is it Ok for be to want better, when God has given me enough?

I would like to think that if we came into a large sum of money, we would pay off our debt, put a little away, and give the rest away.
If God was to bless us in that way, I don't think He would be blessing on the fact that I am such a worthy person and deserve the best. If God blessed us in that way, I would like to think that its because He sees us as a faithful steward that is going to use the bounty of our blessing to further the Gospel for His glory and not our own.

"He who is faithful with little, is faithful with much."
How are we doing now with little?
How are we doing in deciphering our needs from our wants?
Am I doing what I can do to further the Gospel for Gods glory without money?
If it does not require money to reach out to those around me, then why don't I?
How do I take a burden I am feeling, and turn it into a practical outpouring of the Gospel at work?

Just some thoughts I've been thinking. What do you think about this subject?


Anonymous said...

I hate money too. I used to scoff when people said that. But now that I have a home, a good income comeing in, and things I want, I come to realize that you can never stop "wanting" things. My list will always be full. I would rather not come into a lot of money for fear I would not be a good steward of my money. I would just continue to check off my list of stuff I would want and then inevitably fill it with other wants and needs. Eventually the money would run out and then I'd be right back where I started. I hate it because it's like you said, it take discaplin, thought, prayer. And I always assume that if I had a lot of money, I wouldn't have to think so hard about it because I could afford my means of living. But o, nothing could be further from the truth. It's not money that is evil, it's my own sin and selfishness. I don't money to reveal that to me. Money only magnifies the problem for me.

care-in said...

"If God blessed us in that way, I would like to think that its because He sees us as a faithful steward that is going to use the bounty of our blessing to further the Gospel for His glory and not our own."

This is a great post Missy...I love seeing your heart.