No, I am not a financial adviser. But I have discovered the key to total financial security. It is the simplest and hardest thing you can do. It doesn’t involve the Powerball Lottery or the New York Stock Exchange. It doesn’t require any understanding of stocks, mutual funds, or anything reported on CNN, Fox News, or MSNBC. It didn’t come from Dave Ramsey or Ron Blue or Larry Burkett or Crown Financial Ministries, although I think these guys would agree. So, what is the key to total financial security?
“Seek first his (God’s) kingdom and his (God’s) righteousness, and all these things (financial needs) will be given to you as well.” – Matthew 6:33
Make it your business to do God’s will as your sole focus in life, and He will make it His business to take care of your every need.
Now I’m not going to sit and here and lie to you and tell you I never get worried over financial insecurities. I do fall into that stress-trap from time to time. But I’m going to shoot straight with you here, and this isn’t just some kind of religious mumbo-jumbo. I am speaking from real life experience. When my heart, soul, mind, and strength is focused on Kingdom business as I seek to surrender to God’s will and carry out His good work around me, I do not worry about finances. And God takes care of me. Period.
Do I have a huge cushion in my bank account? No. Do I live in the nicest house or drive the nicest car in Baton Rouge? No. But ask me if I have missed a house payment. Ask me if my family has gone hungry. Ask me if my family has everything we need. I realize I live in Middle Class America, which means I live with more wealth at my disposal than the vast majority of the population of the world. This means I probably have a very skewed view of financial needs, wants, security, abundance, etc. Granted. But I know this for sure. When my life is centered on doing the work of the Kingdom and living as an ambassador of Christ in this dark world, I don’t worry about bills, checking accounts, and IRAs. And let’s face it, worrying about those things can drain the life right out of us.
I know this is a very familiar passage for many of you, but I dare you to take some time to really read and meditate on what these words mean to your life:
“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eyes are bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness! No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.”
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?”
“So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” – Matthew 6:19-34 (NIV)
I think the key to putting this lifestyle into practice is expressed very well in this old hymn that I haven’t sung in years:
“This world is not my home. I’m just a-passin’ through. My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue. The angels beckon me from Heaven’s open door. And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.”
Now I think I’ll head outside and watch the family of geese feed around the pond for a while. God is so good!