September 7 I Monday
1 Corinthians 16
“But remember the LORD your God, for it is He who gives you the ability to produce wealth…”
There is a powerful lure in money and we need to know how to use it, because if we do not know how to use it, it will seduce us. Paul tells us, “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).
Although the Apostle Paul says the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil, money in itself is not evil. Thus, our responsibility is to ask the question, how should we use and spend our wealth? Our first obligation with our money is to God. Proverbs 3:9-10 says, “Honour the Lord with your wealth, with the firstfruits of all your crops; then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and your vats will brim over with new wine.” Giving to God is not only a responsibility and a privilege, but giving to God ensures we will always have enough. It may seem like a paradox but Proverbs 11:24 reveals, “One person gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.” Human logic would tell us the other way around: the person who gives away is going to end up in poverty, and the person who holds on is going to be prosperous. Yet, nobody has ever been poverty-stricken because they gave away too much to God. The reverse, however, may be true: if we hold back, we will never have enough.
There are some people who try to exploit this by saying, “You give to God, and He’ll give back to you.” The appeal is to give on the basis of getting back. While God does give to us, we should not give in order to gain because the moment we give to gain, it is called greed, not generosity. We give money out of our heart’s gratitude to His causes and to His interests. In other words, we give to serve; that is generosity, and we leave the consequences to God.
May we heed to the words of the writer of Hebrews: “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have…” Why? The answer: “…because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you’” (Hebrews 13:5).
Where does our security lie? Is it with God or in our possessions? As we realize that our security comes from God, our giving to Him is the first obligation of our wealth.
Prayer: Dear God, thank You for the reminder that everything I have is from You. May the portion that I give back to You be a reflection of my heart’s gratitude. Amen!