Here I go again with another analogy on the subject of our ‘source’. You can see that it is an itch in my thinking that I keep scratching. I think that’s because God wants me to articulate this theme for your benefit (as well as my own). So let me take you into yet another imaginary scenario, where we can better see how choosing our source impacts our whole life.
Two men are church friends and they often share together. They both have high hopes for their future and they both profess faith in Jesus Christ. In time both men face a challenge where they must wait on God for provision. This is quite trying for both men and their families.
Both men are introduced to a business opportunity which could make them the funds they need. However the deal has a shady quality about it. It may be that money is made at the expense of unsuspecting people. One of the men steps away from the deal. The other goes into the deal.
Some time later, when the man who entered the deal is doing financially well, he calls on the other, who is still struggling. He reveals how well he is doing and exhorts his needy friend to join in the deal too. The friend questions the integrity of the deal and confirms that it does involve exploitation of others. He challenges his wealthy friend about the moral compromise he has entered into, encouraging him to trust in the Lord.
The wealthy man says that he has tried trusting the Lord and it did nothing for him, pointing out that his poor friend still trusts the Lord and it has done nothing for him. He pats his wallet and says, “This is what works. I am secure now and I don’t need the Lord. Money is what is going to get me out of trouble.”
The men part and don’t catch up for many years. In that time the poor man has found his feet financially and established the things he needs for his family. The man who loves money has gone on to greater heights of financial success, although his faith is now just a religious façade.
Then their nation entered a time of immense upheaval. Law and order crumbled. Factions fought violently to take control of the country. Banks collapsed, industry stood still and commerce crumbled. The assets of the rich were taken from them and many people died in the civil strife and mob rule which erupted in the land.
The men met again by chance. The lover of money was being herded into the back of a truck, to be taken away by mercenaries, possibly to his death. He called to his friend and said, “Do something!” The friend replied, “What can I do? Why don’t you use some of your money?”
The richer man replied with despair, “It’s worthless! I’ve lost everything!” Then he called to his friend as the truck pulled away, “Pray for me!” “You can pray too!” His friend called back. The rich man shook his head, “No I don’t think I can.”
The Bible warns us not to place our trust in ‘uncertain riches’.
“Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not high minded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy” 1Timothy 6:17
This does not mean that some riches are sure and others are unreliable. It means that monetary riches and physical assets are in and of themselves ‘uncertain”. They are subject to theft, decay, destruction and devaluation. Some riches mean great things in the right circles, but nothing at all in another context. Whole currencies have been scrapped, making the money worthless. Can you imagine how a priceless Ming Dynasty vase would be used in a refugee camp?
The wonderful thing about having God as our source, rather than wealth, is that He is not subject to devaluation or inflation – He changes not. He has always been priceless. He is equally and supremely relevant in every economy and in every place across the planet. He cannot be stolen from you, nor will He decay. You cannot be swindled out of God. There is no currency collapse which makes your connection to God of no consequence. You don’t need an ATM, traveller’s cheques or a stable economy in which to access your Creator.
When you make God your source you are vastly better off than everyone who looks to anything else. Make God your source! Don’t be beguiled by uncertain things, even job security, the promises of men, material assets, or the privilege of your birth or national heritage. God is your only truly reliable asset in all of eternity. Be vitally connected to Him, first of all and above all else.
Tags: analogy, financial success, materialism, money, moral compromise, riches, source, trust, trusting god
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