In previous Steward’s Mindset columns, we’ve looked at what the Bible has to say about stewardship as a whole. We’ve considered God as the Creator and rightful Owner of all things, and our role as trustees of God’s resources. We’ve reviewed the Scriptural truth that we cannot serve two masters, recognizing that money can become a rival god. And we’ve seen the importance of a mindset of abundance and gratitude as opposed to a frantic worrying about provision for our needs.
This month, we turn the corner to look at the five key financial areas. Scripture speaks to us in each of these areas, giving us both wise counsel and heart-shaping commands. These areas are:
As stewards (trustees) of God’s resources, we’re called to be:
- Diligent earners
- Generous givers
- Wise savers
- Cautious debtors
- Prudent spenders
In each of these key areas, God calls us to faithfulness to His Word, rather than the foolishness of the culture’s pull.
Our culture bombards us with myths regarding our finances – to the point that if we do not intentionally soak ourselves in the Word of God, we may become unbalanced in our thinking and unconsciously buy in to the culture’s pull. Some of these myths include:
- Things bring happiness.
- Debt is expected and unavoidable.
- A little more money will solve all our problems.
God’s Word shows us the fallacy of these and other myths of our culture regarding finances. In reality, many of the richest people in the world are also the most stressed and the most miserable. Money and things do not bring happiness; as Jesus pointed out, our lives do not consist in the abundance of our possessions (Luke 12:15). And while money can solve some problems, it cannot solve problems of the heart (and in fact it often creates them!). Paul warned Timothy about those who want to get rich and how they become ensnared, declaring that the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil (1 Timothy 6:6-10). Instead, the believer is called to cultivate godliness with contentment (verse 6), which Paul himself had developed in his life (Philippians 4:10-13).
In the coming months, we’ll look at the wisdom of God’s Word in these five financial areas, contrasting God’s wisdom with the culture’s foolishness and exploring ways to pursue God’s heart.