God Loves a Cheerful Giver

November 26, 2009 by  
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“For the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith, and pierced themselves with many a pang.  But flee from these things, you man of God; and pursue rightousness, godliness, faith, love, perseverence and gentleness” (I Timothy 6:10-11; NASB).
 
Many a christian has ruined his or her reputation by pursuing money in a sinful way. When I took my first job in the insurance business, an older, wise man that I worked with, told me the importance of making money honestly and having a good reputation. The consequences of a Christian using deceptive business practices, eliminates their influence as a disciple of God.  

We must teach people, especially the young, to make an honest living and place their priorities in the right place to make a successful life on earth which is pleasing to God. By placing faith, family, and work in the proper perspective, we can live fuller and more productive lives, being the kind of examples God wants and expects us to be.

Giving on the first day of the week, as Paul stated in I Corinthians 16:1-2, with the proper attitude is an act of worship and as important as any other commandment God has given us. A clear test of seeing how much we love money is in how we contribute financially to the Lord’s work.  How many Christians living in luxurious homes are either not giving, or giving the Lord the same amount as their lunch money after the Sunday service on the first day of the week?  What does the Lord think about a person who lives in a gated community, drives luxury cars, has country club memberships, makes a six figure salary, and yet puts the same amount of money in the collection plate that they would spend on one meal at Red Lobster for 2 people?  Sounds rather ridiculous, but it happens every first day of the week at many congregations.  The next time you think about buying a luxury item, consider the leftovers you might be leaving to God.  II Corinthians 9:7 says, “Let each one do just as he has purposed in his heart; not grudgingly or under compulsion; for God loves a cheerful giver.” Something to think about kind friend! 

-Phil Barnes

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Count Your Blessings

For many years we have sung the song “Count Your Many Blessings.” This is a very old song, but with a most relevant message for us today.

It seems today as if God blessing us is equated with our personal financial (material) condition.

Having talents, education and abilities to provide financially for our families certainly is a blessing from God. However, if we see our financial independence and ability to earn a living as our only blessing from God, we have really missed the point of the song and the true meaning of God’s blessings toward us.

If we go back to the verse of the song that says, “Name them one by one” and we actually sit down and list all of the ways God has blessed us, we will definitely understand how blessed we are.

Salvation                                     Health                             Relationships                           Jobs

Forgiveness                               Spouse                           Homes                                        Food

Prayer                                          Children                          Country                                       Clothing

Spiritual Family                          Grandchildren               Memories                                    Wonders of Nature

What’s on your list, mine surely is not finished or complete. Somehow making a list, writing them down, giving them some thought helps us realize just what a blessed people we are.

With the economic hardships that many people are experiencing today, if we equate God’s blessings with our financial health we will truly miss all the other wonderful ways that God has blessed us.

Think about how God has blessed you, write them down -“Count Your Many Blessings, Name Them One By One.”

Ephesians 1:3 “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ”.

Matthew 6:31 & 33 “Therefore take no thought, saying what shall we eat? Or, What shall we drink? Or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you“. 

–David Coleman

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Materialism in America

October 3, 2008 by  
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We are living in scary times. The economy in the United States is on life support. Banks are failing as seen in the “Great Depression” of the 1930’s. Since last November, the Stock Market has fallen over 3500 points, which represents millions of dollars Americans have lost. Thousands of Americans are losing their homes to foreclosures. To make matters worse, thousands of this country’s citizens are losing their jobs. The United States is at war with two different countries costing billions of dollars and the lives of many of our young men and women.

What possibly could have caused all this trouble for one of the richest countries in the world? The answer can be summarized in one word—Greed . Let me say that one more time—Greed . The business leaders and CEO’s of our large businesses used dishonest business practices to make more money. They really did not care who it hurt; the important thing was making more money.

The sad fact is Americans whether rich, middle class or poor have made Materialism their god. They have completely forsaken the teachings of God’s word in order to worship the god of wealth. This is why when wealth starts to fail they get so upset. Lets take a look at what God’s word says about those who love and worship money. l Timothy 6:10 says “For the love of money is the root of all evil; which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows ” (KJV). The Bible goes on to say in Matthew 6:19-20 Lay not up for yourself treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and thieves break through and steal. But lay up for yourself treasures in Heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt and where thieves do not break through nor steal (KJV).

When Americans realize they can have wonderful peace in service to the Lord and laying up their treasures in Heaven, their agonizing over money and wealth will go away and peace will be restored in their lives.

 

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