Saturday, December 19, 2015

Money – Money – Money…

by Tim Howard

This Christmas season started out by putting up some lights, getting the tree decorated and visiting some of the local stores in hopes of purchasing a few gifts for those I love and care about.  Since we are cutting back on the gifts I was sure my shopping would be done in a few hours.

Even though it took a few more days than anticipated – I’m glad to say I am finished!

During this time, I was reminded of that familiar phrase “Money Talks!” I think you would agree – because we’ve all heard its voice: It shouts, “Spend me!” and whispers, “Save me!” Someone said, “Money talks: Mine is always saying, ‘Good-bye!’”

That phrase means money has power and influence. Money talks…and one of the most dangerous things it says is: “LOVE ME!”

The Apostle Paul said: “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs”   1 Timothy 6:10
Money is intrinsically neutral but loving money opens the proverbial Pandora’s box.

Maybe you’ve seen ‘A Christmas Carol,’ which is an 1843 novella by English author Charles Dickens. Many have seen or read this great fictional and prose narrative but if you haven’t you should. The story tells of a sour and stingy man named Ebenezer Scrooge and his ideological, ethical, and emotional transformation resulting from supernatural visits from Jacob Marley and the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Yet to Come.

Before the radical change, Mr. Scrooge LOVED money and USED people when he should have loved people and used money. When anyone confuses these two priorities, life is altered for the worse.

Jesus summed up the two greatest commands this way:  “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’

When a passion for God and a compassion for people become your top two priorities, you experience what Scrooge missed. Life and True Love!

Money talks, but God also talks and says: Use money!  It’s a tool for helping others but love people.

In this season of giving, remember the greatest gifts can’t be purchased. You don’t need to go into debt to prove you love someone. Money’s important but one thing is very clear in his Word: Money is not the most important thing!

Churches talk about giving money; businesses talk about making money; Frugal people talk about saving money while extravagant people talk about spending money. Penny Pinchers talk about wasting money, Financial Consultants talk about investing money but God talks about Stewarding His money and using it to bless people.

When you hear the shouts of  ‘Money, money, money’ ringing in your ears this Christmas, make sure you maintain a correct perspective. You will be much happier and cause people to be filled with a whole lot of joy!

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