Preaching about money is always difficult - let me tell you why. It's not the topic that's difficult; it's the people's attitude toward the topic. When it comes to money some people love it, others despise it. Some have been burnt by a lack of it while many have been ruined by the excess of it. The pursuit of more has wrecked lives and the love of money is considered the root of evil. It is an intensely personal issue that people don't like to discuss, yet it is the overriding issue in the public conscious these days.
You see? It isn't the topic of money, it's people's attitude toward money that make it difficult to discuss.
That's because most of us need an attitude adjustment.
Our attitudes toward money may be varied, but if we could change this one foundational thought about money, all of our attitudes would change. Here's the thought:
It's not ours.
That's right. All that hard earned cash is not yours. It's not mine either. Let's be honest for a minute. Everything we have in life has been given to us, including our money. Don't believe me? Your money came from your work. Your work came from your hiring. You were hired based on your education/experience. Your education and experience came from your abilities and knowledge. Your abilities to work, learn, and live, were given to you by ... God Himself.
(This is where many people check out.)
It is here that many of you will begin the "The church just wants my money" rhetoric. Can I just tell you what a huge crock that is! It's a cop-out that allows people to not take seriously the responsibilities that come along with financial blessings. Listen, people come to the church or the Bible or to God for help with job choices, family struggles, depression issues, addiction, parenting concerns, marriage conflicts, moving decisions ... even whether they are going to go to heaven or not. But they don't want to hear anything that God has to say when it comes to THEIR money. Why? Because it's THEIR'S.
And therein lies the rub.
If we could just get our heads around the fact that all we have has been ENTRUSTED to us by God, our attitudes toward money would be completely different.
"You may say to yourself, 'My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.' 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." (Deut. 8:17-18)
Until we learn to TRUST the One who has ENTRUSTED so much to us, we will never learn to live generously.
To hear what Jesus has to say about all of this, check out Luke 12:13-21.