One of the great blessings and dangers of business is that it requires you to deal with money. Money can do great harm, but also significant good. Whatever our resouces, they are a stewardship, a thing entrusted to us. Thinking rightly about our resources in relation to God is important.
Here are three things to consider as we seek to honor God with our goods:
- Recognize that God is the giver of wealth.
“You may say to yourself, ‘My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.’ But remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your ancestors, as it is today.”
When we prosper, one of the great temptations is to believe that we have done it ourselves. As such, prosperity becomes a great inducement to pride. When we do experience such blessings, we should stop and humble ourselves, and recognize that God is the one who controls our circumstances. Wise business practices, great timing, excellent strategy and culture development may all flow through you, and be the secondary causes of God’s blessing. But ask the question: who made you wise? Everything is a gift from God. Therefore God should be thanked for every achievement.
- Recognize that material success is not ultimate riches.
“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
One of the absurd dangers of wealth is the notion that it is permanent. Anyone who has had resources knows that the cultivation and maintenance of such resources takes enormous mental and emotional energy. Moth and rust and thieves and inflation and plunging stock markets and unexpected events constantly shock us into recognition of how temporary earthly wealth proves to be. Once we recognize that such wealth is temporary, it further helps us to cultivate humility before God, regardless of the resources we have access to.
- Recognize and rejoice in the ultimate gift of reconciliation and relationship with God through the sacrifice of Jesus.
“For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.”
–1 Peter 1:18-19
These are true riches. By faith in the immeasurably costly sacrifice of Jesus, we are counted as righteous in God’s sight. Every honest person knows they have much to confess, but this imperishable treasure gains for us a permanent place of reconciliation and relationship with God. Not only forgiven, but adopted into His family, there is nothing in all of creation so valuable as this sacrifice. No mountain of gold could buy it, no bitcoin or stock can match it. We honor God by recognizing the supreme value of His gift to us in Jesus.
As we move through the marketplace, let us steward our resources wisely. Then when we give account for how we have used these things, our Master will give us true riches.