Points To Ponder/The Rich Walk Dangerously
by Pastor Dennis Whitmore
If you think being rich means having a lot of money then you do not understand wealth - true wealth. If all you have is money and lots of stuff, well you really don’t have very much at all.
The latest t-shirt message I have seen in our society is “It is all about me.” I see that and I have to wonder:
1. What is the “It”?
2. Does the wearer actually
believe that message?
A self-centered child is an annoying child who grows up to be a rather useless adult. A focus of self as the center of life, the accumulation of money and stuff as the mission, leads to a depth of poverty that defies the perceived security of a million dollar portfolio. Most of us are truly rich, more so than most of the earth’s population, yet so many feel that they do not have much. Some even dare to say that they are poor.
Yes, they are poor. But, not in terms of true wealth. Jesus talked about making deposits of our treasures in heaven’s bank. It is the kind of wealth that does not rot, wear out, or can be stolen. The truly rich are wealthy in the currency of eternity. Nobody can touch it but God; because God is the source of it.
“Every good and perfect gift comes from above from the Father.” (James 1:17)
You have abilities and can work for wages because God enabled you. Again, the source of it all is the Lord.
“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 forefathers, as it is today.” (Deuteronomy 8:18)
If you go through life thinking it is all you - and it is all about you, and for you, then you will accumulate things and have NOTHING. You will be the center of your life and wonder why the life that is all around you does not fulfill.
Unless you are filled full, you will never be fulfilled. The truly wealthy become rich by giving away what they have; not their stuff, but themselves. Here is how the rich really LIVE:
1. They get rich in the WORD. “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” (Colossians 3:16-17 NKJV)
With this you join with others to feed upon the living Word. Let it dwell in you that you may help it dwell in others.
“And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ.” (Colossians 3:23-24 NKJV)
2. They walk in the spirit. “Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses that you keep this commandment without spot, blameless until our Lord Jesus Christ’s appearing.” (1 Timothy 6 NKJV)
Those who are growing rich in the Word will boldly walk in the Spirit, living a life of discipline and endurance. “Walk in the Spirit and you will not fulfill the desires of the flesh.” (Galations 5:16)
2. They live dangerously. Boldly take advantage of the opportunities to BE the presence of Jesus Christ. Serve others, meet needs, and take risks for Christ’s sake without regard for reward or praise. Being Christ-like in values and practice goes against the current of the culture and human common sense. But if you are TRULY RICH, you must. Remember how Peter and John faced the religious leaders. “But Peter and John answered and said to them, ‘Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.’” (Acts 4:19-20 NKJV)
Missionary C.T. Studd gave up earthly riches in order to live in the mission field and reach souls. He said “Only one life, twill soon be past. Only what is done for Christ will last.”
Spend and be spent for what really matters.
Pastor Whitmore serves God at The First United Methodist Church in Laurel, MD. Visit www.fumcl.org.