Enjoying the Journey
This week we sat around the dinner table with our children and had a most interesting conversation about finances. The discussion was not just about our finances but about theirs. Each of our kids are now at the age and stage in life where they are beginning to make serious decisions about saving and spending. I enjoyed sharing with them some lessons that my parents taught me about the vital importance of paying the tithe and being a giver. For a Christian this is where it all begins.
Only as we remember where our money comes from and why it is placed in our hands can we make right decisions about what to do with it. The Bible principle at stake is actually not just about finances, it is about the wise stewardship of our whole life. “But thou shalt remember the LORD thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth…” (Deuteronomy 8:18).
As a teenager I remember hearing Adrian Rogers say two powerful statements about money that I have never forgotten:
“To find out how rich you are, add up everything that money cannot buy and death cannot take away.”
“You can’t take your money with you…but you can send it on ahead! By investing in the only thing that is going there – the souls of men.”
The Lord Jesus spoke a great deal about money – not because it is the most important thing, but because it is one of the least things that can cause the greatest trouble! And, in fact, what we do with our money is an indicator of the place Christ holds in our hearts. Money matters.
For that reason permit me to recommend a handful of books that would be helpful as you consider this area of your own life:
The Treasure Principle by Randy Alcorn (Anything that Alcorn writes is substantive and helpful. His book on The Purity Principle is one of the best I have ever read on purity. But this little book will help you to discover what Jesus taught about giving in very practical ways.)
The Grace of Giving by Stephen Olford (This Bible expositor examines the key passages throughout the Word of God on the subject of giving. As my dad used to say, “There are two kinds of people: givers and takers. And you will have to decide which one you are going to be.” This book will help you get into God’s Word.)
The Stewardship of Life by Clarence Sexton (It was my privilege many years ago to teach these chapters to young couples who were starting out in life. They cover the wide spectrum of stewardship and will help you to see earthly things from an eternal perspective. Very helpful.)
God’s Miraculous Plan of Economy by Jack R. Taylor (This book will encourage you to look beyond your money and see God and the needy world around you. God takes care of His children and God expects His children to operate differently than this world. Meditate on these truths.)
Faith and Finances by Tim Rosen (This little book was placed in my hands last year while I was preaching in Australia. It is well done and easy to read. A good resource to pass along to others.)
Early on I was helped by reading Tim Burkett, Dave Ramsey, and others. There are a host of good books on budgeting, debt, and preparing for retirement, but these books will help to lay a biblical foundation to build on. In these volatile times it would be good for all of us to go back to first principles. What books have helped you on this subject?
Read each article in this series: