Skip to main content

Principle 7: Know What Riches Are

Riches are elusive - especially when we are pursuing them.  Riches seldom fall into our laps, delivered on a silver platter, all nice and neat.  Instead, we have to pursue, labor, direct our focus, and spend a whole lot of time going after them.  Now, don't get me wrong - I don't want to live in a cardboard box, but if we just begin to consider this a little, we might just get a little insight into our seventh principle for living with a solid foundation in life.  Riches are not "prohibited" or "bad" for a Christian, but they are not the end-all!  I think our purpose today is to discover where our true riches are and how they are obtained, maintained, and continually refreshed.  

Don’t wear yourself out trying to get rich; restrain yourself!  Riches disappear in the blink of an eye; wealth sprouts wings and flies off into the wild blue yonder.  (Proverbs 23:4-5 MSG)

To be certain, our riches are really not the things or "bank balance" we attain, but the richness of God's grace, love, and purpose in our lives.  What we often find ourselves doing is pursuing what we "think" will make us happy in some sense, rather than accepting what we can "count on" to fulfill us totally.  Look at the two words I used there - pursuing and accepting.  Once we determine our actions as either "pursuing" or "accepting", we might just have a little bit of an indicator of what types of riches we are after in this lifetime!  Those which elude us need to be pursued - those which are gifted to us need to be accepted.

God's grace and love are "accepted" riches - we "amass" them at the point of our acceptance of the sacrificial death of Christ and the placement of our hope in his finished work on the cross.  We "accrue" these riches into our lives the longer we walk with Jesus and learn of him.  Today's grace will be built upon tomorrow, and tomorrow's will increase even more, and so on.  We are not really amassing "more" - just coming to appreciate the significance of his grace and love more fully each day.  We are truly receiving, not pursuing, because God pursues US in order to bring us close to him.  We just nuzzle up in response to his love and grace - this is what we often refer to as US pursuing him. 

Earthly treasures are fine - they fulfill a purpose in this life here on earth.  I need a car to get back and forth to work, and God has blessed me with a very reliable one.  I need clothing to cover my nakedness, but it is not the clothing which truthfully adorns me.  I require food to keep my body functioning correctly and at optimum health, but food is not what I pursue.  These are things I am trusting God to provide - giving me good health and the ability to work well in my chosen profession.  What I am focused on daily is the purposeful spending of time getting into his Word, allowing it to get into me, and letting his still-small-voice speak into the depths of my spirit.

There is a joke which goes something like this:  A man meets an angel one day and is told today is his time to leave this earth. He is given the opportunity to take anything from this earth he wants - just one thing.  He chooses all the gold he has amassed in his treasury.  When he arrives in heaven, he is greeted by the same angel.  The angel questions him about his choice of bringing the gold.  The man says he has worked hard for it and the angel says, "Yeah, but I just don't understand why you brought paving material to heaven!"  We are unaware of the magnitude of God's riches until we allow him to reveal them to us.  Our writer wants us to beware of the "pursuit" of what doesn't really last. In turn, he hopes we will learn the meaning of our true "wealth" or "riches" - Jesus Christ.  To be a child of God is to come into the fullness of all the "wealth" of God's Kingdom.  Don't live to pursue what amounts to "paving material" in God's economy!  Just sayin!


Popular posts from this blog

The bobby pin in the electrical socket does what???

Avoidance is the act of staying away from something - usually because it brings some kind of negative effect into your life.  For example, if you are a diabetic, you avoid the intake of high quantities of simple sugars because they bring the negative effect of elevating your blood glucose to unhealthy levels.  If you were like me as a kid, listening to mom and dad tell you the electrical outlets were actually dangerous didn't matter all that much until you put the bobby pin into the tiny slots and felt that jolt of electric current course through your body! At that point, you recognized electricity as having a "dangerous" side to it - it produces negative effects when embraced in a wrong manner.  Both of these are good things, when used correctly.  Sugar has a benefit of producing energy within our cells, but an over-abundance of it will have a bad effect.  Electricity lights our path and keeps us warm on cold nights, but not contained as it should be and it can produce


When someone tells you that you need to wrap your mind around some concept, they are telling you that the subject at hand will take some effort on our part to actually get enough of a hint of it in order to even remotely understand it. The subject is complex, even a little overwhelming, and we will have to apply ourselves to really grasp it very well. We cannot wrap our minds around God's wisdom and knowledge - because it is infinite and our brains are sadly finite. We can only 'think' so far and then we have to 'trust'. Some of us think there is nothing we can trust if we cannot 'think' it through, but this will never work when it comes to our faith. Faith requires trust in what is unseen and not fully comprehended. The truth we believe is really building our trust, but until we approach God with more trust than 'thought', we will never fully grasp some of the things he has prepared for us. We cannot wrap our minds around God’s wisdom and knowledg

Give him the pieces

What or Who is it that causes division among you right now? Maybe it is more of a 'what' than a 'who' that is creating the division between you and something you need in your life. Perhaps you are struggling with an addiction to something that keeps coming between you and true liberty from the hold that thing has on you. Yes, addiction is really the worst kind of enslavement one can imagine - being so emotionally or psychologically attached to the 'thing' that any attempt to break free causes so much trauma in your life that you just cannot imagine being free. But...God is above that addiction - he is stronger than the emotional or psychological pull that thing has in your life. Maybe the dividing force in your life right now is a 'who' - a tough relationship challenge between you and a coworker, a spouse that seems to no longer share your interests or values, or even a relative that doesn't understand some of your choices and now chooses to withdraw