Thursday, November 13, 2008

What to Do in Times Like These

1. BECOME MORE GENEROUS, NOT STINGIER. Most people think the way to wealth is to spend less and save more. That’s true and very sound advice. But it's only part of the picture. If you want God to bless your financial situation, then you need to become a generous person. The Bible says that God LOVES a cheerful giver. Jesus Himself said that our finances were connected to our heart. Paul challenged us to excel in the grace of giving.

I know a lot of people that are struggling with their finances… and yet they do not tithe. Surprise! In contrast, those who tithe never wind up in financial trouble. Why is that? First of all, God blesses their faithfulness; a guarantee of Malachi chapter 3. Secondly, those who tithe (10%) are exercising financial discipline and are better stewards of their resources.

Generosity a faith issue, not a financial issue.

2. GET MORE INVOLVED IN CHURCH, NOT LESS. If God’s people stepped up and shouldered their God-given responsibility, then we would take care of people, provide clean water to parched lands, feed people who needed food, and so much more. But the biggest need is to help people find salvation through Jesus Christ.

When Jesus left planet Earth, He left behind the church and commissioned us all to go and make disciples. That’s our mission. It’s not making money so we can have a full barn. It’s spreading the gospel. You need to leverage your time, energy and talents in the Kingdom of God to make a Kingdom difference. That’s storing up treasures in heaven, where moth, rust and the stock market can’t take away!

3. STOP EXPECTING SOMEONE ELSE TO SOLVE YOUR PROBLMES. It troubles me to encounter so many people who believe the government should provide for all their needs. I’m all for social justice, but it’s not the job of the government to take care of every want and need in your life. The Constitution of the United States guarantees you the pursuit of happiness in our free society…. but nowhere does it promise you happiness provided by the government. To pursue happiness means you have to get out there and earn your own living, work hard, and enjoy the fruit of your labor – not someone else’s.

Instead of relying upon entitlements, go back to school, learn some new skills, work overtime, take a second job, start your own business, and get off your blessed assurance.

4. GET SERIOUS ABOUT GOD. Read your Bible everyday in a quiet place. Start a journal to write down your thoughts and reflections. Become a deep thinker. Join a Bible study group to hear the perspective and insights of others on the Christian life. Talk to God. More importantly, listen to Him. Practice His presence. See Him as your constant companion. Grow in knowledge and faith. Become deeply spiritual.