Focus Passages: The Good Life and you stuff.
A sterling reputation is better than striking it rich;
a gracious spirit is better than money in the bank
The rich and the poor have this in common:
the Lord made them both
The World of the Generous
The world of the generous gets larger and larger;
the world of the stingy gets smaller and smaller.
Honor God with everything you own; give him the first and the best.
Then your barns will be filled to overflowing,
and your vats will brim over with new wine
Mercy to the needy is a loan to God,
and God pays back those loans in full.
Being Content with Enough
Don’t give me either poverty or wealth;
but give me only my daily bread.
Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you
and say, ‘Who is the Lord?’
Or I may become poor and steal,
and so dishonor the name of my God.
Take it Deeper This Week
Our culture loves to celebrate extremes. It is not hard to find advice from folks who will tell you to live in extreme minimalism, just as it is not hard to see the many ways our culture celebrates and idolizes extravagant wealth. Both of these paths can leave you feeling like frustrated because you can never fully arrive.
Your bank account will always have less than you want.
Your house will always have a stash of clutter that makes you feel guilty.
What if, instead, you simply focused on the word "enough". Jesus teaches us this in his prayer in Matthew 6 where we are encouraged to daily ask for our "daily bread". Living with the goal of enough reminds your connection to the Divine is essential, and that you are missing out when you strive for total independence. Living with enough shifts your focus toward making sure everyone else has enough instead of focusing on what you lack. Living with enough is a reminder that you, yourself, are enough. God has created you in the image of God exactly the way God wanted you to be. So focus on what you have, and use that to glorify God.
How can you shift your focus toward seeking your "daily bread" from God this week?
How can you be generous with the time, talent, and resources that you have?