the love of money…
It can be a sensitive subject, right?
Sometimes, people get offended if you ask them about their money situation because they consider it a private affair.
Other times, people flaunt their money for all to see, which can also be offensive.
Some people have lots of money. Others, not so much.
Some people hoard their money for themselves. Other people give it away freely.
Some people love to spend money. Others like to save.
No matter how you feel about money, the Bible makes one thing clear:
The love of money is the root of all kinds of evil.
1 Timothy 6: 9-10 warns, “But people who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.”
I don’t know about you, but I have no desire to end up in ruin and destruction, pierced with sorrow. Therefore, I want to make sure that I don’t love money.
Which begs the question: what does that even mean?
In a culture where money makes the world go round, what does it mean to love money?
Simply put, loving money means that money has the #1 place in a person’s heart.
Practically speaking, loving money means a person:
- Desires money more than he or she desires God. That person will long for it, dream about it, or yearn for it more than a relationship with the savior.
- Finds satisfaction and contentment in money, not in their relationship with Christ.
- Trusts in money. Security and safety is found in wealth instead of God.
- Pursues it wholeheartedly and makes wealth the goal instead of God’s glory being the goal.
Loving money is idolatry, plain and simple, because something other than God is being exalted as worthy of our devotion. Jesus made this clear in Matthew 6:24-25 when he explained that you cannot serve both God and money. He cautioned: you will love one and hate the other…which is pretty strong language.
We have a choice to make, friends.
What gets to hold the #1 place in our hearts?
The world says money.
The Bible says God.
Ironically, the love of money leads to the cheap version of riches. It creates wealth that is fleeting and fickle and will disappear when we leave this world. Loving money leads to spiritual poverty.
Loving God leads us to the throne of unlimited, glorious resources for eternity. It’s a richness that will last forever. Loving God leads to spiritual wealth.
So, at the risk of being completely and utterly politically incorrect, (but out of concern for your eternity), what do you love most? What is #1 in your heart? Do you love God or money?
Even more invasive: How does your bank account answer that question? What does your calendar show about that question? Would your dreams and goals line up with your answer?
For most of my life, I claimed to love God, but I pursued money far more rigorously. I was always dreaming about a bigger house, a nicer car, better clothes, a luxury vacation, and more. I played the when / then game: when I get ______, then I will be happy. The blank was always filled in with material things and never filled in with Jesus. I bought into the lie that money equals a rich and satisfying life, but I had lots of money and I ended up miserable and alone. I was poor in the truest sense.
These days, I’m fighting the good fight to be different. I’m determined to make my faith more important than wealth. It’s not easy, but eternity is on the line. Therefore, I am intentional to spend an hour every day on my knees and in the Word. I dedicate that time in the morning to aligning my heart and my mind to God’s will, so that I can bring him glory. It helps tremendously in keeping my heart in love with the right thing: God. My bank account and my dreams and my calendar all reflect my devotion to Christ. Financially, our family is in a tenuous position – my hubby doesn’t have a job come June. Even though we don’t have wealth, I’ve never felt so rich. God really does provide immeasurable riches to those who love him.
Please note that I’m not saying it’s wrong to have money. The danger is that money can become a stumbling block when we love it more than we love God. Those blessed with wealth in this life have a great opportunity before them to demonstrate their love for God by how they spend their money. 1 Timothy 6:17-19 instructs, “Teach those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which is so unreliable. Their trust should be in God, who richly gives us all we need for our enjoyment. Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works and generous to those in need, always being ready to share with others. By doing this, they will be storing up their treasure as a good foundation for the future so that they may experience true life.” Those with good fortune can focus on using their money to help others, and in doing so, bring glory to God. What an awesome way to use their riches!
What has the #1 place in your heart? Have you thought about that question lately? I encourage you, no matter how much money you have, to ask yourself this question. As always, I love hearing from you. Message me or comment on the blog and I will get on my knees for you. Feel free to re-post, share and forward this blog – I appreciate your help spreading the word. Let’s do this faith journey together.
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