Skip to main content

What's in your wallet?

True wealth is not of the pocket, but of the heart and of the mind. 
(Kevin Gates)

I'd have to say there are a whole lot of 'posers' in this world today - people who proclaim great wealth and tend to 'flaunt it' a little at times. These same people are oftentimes poor in the true sense of the word - deficient, lacking, impoverished in the spiritual and emotional realm. Why is it that material wealth really doesn't satisfy us all that well? I think it is because we are made as 'tri-part' beings - body, soul, and spirit. All have to be fulfilled for their to be a true balance in life. We cannot neglect the spirit and feed only the body or soul. One cannot exist without the other. Wealth does little to feed the spirit, while it oftentimes overfeeds the body and soul. There is a lot of pretense in life, but we cannot pretend to have a healthy spirit apart from it being indwelt by the Spirit of God.

One pretends he is wealthy but has nothing, while another seems to be poor but has great wealth. (Proverbs 13:7)

Great wealth isn't found in our pocketbooks or wallets. It is found in the heart of a man - spirit motivated by the inner working of God's love, peace, and grace. Therein we find true wealth - greater than the wealth we might put on display for others to see. It matters not if you live in a cardboard box or a palatial mansion - how are things with your soul - your mind, will, and emotions? Are they in balance? Are they whole because God's Spirit has touched them, making them whole and healthy? If not, the wealth you have is probably temporary and will soon depart when adversity comes your way.

Why is it God's kids seem to flourish in times of uncertainty and greater adversity? It isn't that they have a secret stash of foodstuff in the root cellar or stockpiles of money in the mattresses. It is that they know where their true provision comes - from the throne room of God himself. They have learned to trust not in things seen, but in things unseen. So many of us attempt to fill some empty part of our lives with things that won't really endure when the hard things must be faced. We are going to be emotionally bankrupt in short order when our trust is placed in such things. 

As I write these words today, I know some will quickly defend their 'position' by pointing out they 'know God', but let me just say to each of us - if our trust is more in what we see and hold, then we are trusting in the wrong thing. We can have divided trust - it is possible to put our trust in God, but put trust in 'things' and 'positions', as well. That is why the rich young ruler had such a hard time with what Jesus told him to do when he asked him how he could experience eternal life. Jesus' response actually put a hurdle in his way that he could not jump over. 

What was Jesus' response? Sell what you have, give it to the poor, and come follow me. How many of us can say we really understand the struggle the young ruler had at that moment? He had told Jesus he had kept the commandments, honored his parents, and remained faithful to his wife. Why would Jesus ask him to sell his possessions and give them to the poor? It was because Jesus knew where the man 'anchored' his faith - in what he had amassed. The scripture tells us he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions. (Matthew 19:16-30) 

Jesus may not be asking us to part with our physical riches, but he is asking us to consider how much faith we place in them, or our own ability to obtain them. His purpose in asking us to take notice of where we place our faith is because if there is anything else in the center of our trust other than him, we will live truly unfulfilled and empty lives. Just sayin!


Popular posts from this blog

What did obedience cost Mary and Joseph?

As we have looked at the birth of Christ, we have considered the fact he was born of a virgin, with an earthly father so willing to honor God with his life that he married a woman who was already pregnant.  In that day and time, a very taboo thing.  We also saw how the mother of Christ was chosen by God and given the dramatic news that she would carry the Son of God.  Imagine her awe, but also see her tremendous amount of fear as she would have received this announcement, knowing all she knew about the time in which she lived about how a woman out of wedlock showing up pregnant would be treated.  We also explored the lowly birth of Jesus in a stable of sorts, surrounded by animals, visited by shepherds, and then honored by magi from afar.  The announcement of his birth was by angels - start to finish.  Mary heard from an angel (a messenger from God), while Joseph was set at ease by a messenger from God on another occasion - assuring him the thing he was about to do in marrying Mary wa

A brilliant display indeed

Love from the center of who you are ; don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply ; practice playing second fiddle. Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder. (Romans 12:9-12) Integrity and Intensity don't seem to fit together all that well, but they are uniquely interwoven traits which actually complement each other. "Love from the center of who you are; don't fake it." God asks for us to have some intensity (fervor) in how we love (from the center of who we are), but he also expects us to have integrity in our love as he asks us to be real in our love (don't fake it). They are indeed integral to each other. At first, we may only think of integrity as honesty - some adherence to a moral code within. I believe there is a little more to integrity than meets the eye. In the most literal sense,

Do me a favor

If you’ve gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care—then do me a favor: Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends. Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand. (Philippians 2:1-4) Has God's love made ANY difference in your life? What is that difference? Most of us will likely say that our lives were changed for the good, while others will say there was a dramatic change. Some left behind lifestyles marked by all manner of outward sin - like drug addiction, alcoholism, prostitution, or even thievery. There are many that will admit the things they left behind were just a bit subtler - what we can call inward sin - things like jealousy,