When is a rich man poor? When he tries to find satisfaction in his money. Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived, said, “He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver” (Ecclesiastes 5:10). http://www.lwf.org/site/R?i=M_hM_qndbA3BU_-UPHgt7Q A man of modest income said to a man who was very rich, “I have more than you have.” The rich man said, “How is that so?” He answered, “Because I have all I want, and you don’t.” Many of the people that you see on the street are very dissatisfied with what they have because they believe that they don’t have as much as the next guy or their next door neighbor. But….have you ever wondered about their life or their health? How about yours? Yes, those of us which don’t have much or the means to get as much as others do have more than the rich do simply because, like Paul wrote in Philippians 4:12: “I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.” How can the vast majority of people get by with humble means or live in prosperity and be content? Most aren’t even satisfied with the coffee that they drink in the morning, let alone the paycheck that they get! It is very true that loving anything other than God can cause a great deal of pain, in your eternity as well as now. Being too attached to silver or gold has a really deleterious effect on our soul which shows up in our lives every day. It shows up in our character which allows it to spill out into our work life and our family life and therefore destroys both in the end. So, what can we do about this type of situation? In all honesty, we ourselves can’t do anything about it on our own power and our thoughts and deeds. We are the cause of the situation not the One Who can cure or fix the situation! Jesus and the mercy which He pours out on us each and every day is the Physician which heals and fixes the problem and He can if we will allow Him to do so. Your life and your business can be…will be so much more effective and less stressful with Him in your heart and in your life.
There could be many interpretations of that statement: Are you living well today? Is there a “living well” today? “LIVING WELL?!?” “Today?!!?” Are you kidding me!!!!????
All of these are questions which need answering for our culture today. In business and in life, living well can be accomplished but it must be done carefully. Yes, you can live like a king if you are making the money to do so. But, what will all the cars and houses and things get you? Noticed? yes. Happy? Not likely.
Things that money can buy will satisfy only a portion of your life and mine, but not the innermost part of us. You cannot purchase something which is priceless and which cannot be bought with money. More and more stuff just takes up space and it soon rusts and falls apart or is stolen to pay taxes on other things or sold to get more stuff. What actual good will any of it do for you or for someone else? Will a custom Rolls Royce feed you or clothe you? Can you live in it when your home is repossessed? Your Rolex can’t help with the bills when the money is gone and you will only get a small percentage of what it is actually worth if you sell it or pawn it.
Stuff like this is gotten by those who want these things for their exclusive nature and the perception that it gives others about their owner. But are you really the owner or are you owned by them?
The world and those who crave material gain are only in whatever business they are in for the money and prestige, when that is gone there is no satisfaction in it anymore so they move on to something else. Like the prodigal son, while he had money, he had “friends” but when the money was gone so were they. They latched onto the next sucker in line who had money enough to interest them and like leeches, when that dried up they moved on to the next one and so on.
Life is like that too, especially living by the world’s standards of success with all of the glitter and glamour of it. Like the prodigal though when the money is gone and there is no more coming in, all those pretty things and the people that came with them will just go “poof!”
So, what are you working toward? A big mansion and a Rolls with a Rolex on your arm and a custom made suit? An Olympic sized pool and a garden for a back yard that would be the envy of the whole town? I have a question to ask of you if this is what you are looking for. Why?
What good will all of that do? The things which I listed have a combined cost of well over one million dollars and unless you are making enough to buy it with cash, that is a LOT of payments to make. What could I do with one million dollars? Lets see….I could pay off all of my debts, medical and student loans, buy my wife a brand new car or truck if she wanted it, build a nice home, finance some improvements for the church that I pastor and pay the taxes on the one million too and still have about two hundred thousand left to send my kid to college without a loan.
Yes, one million can do a lot in some people’s hands and for some it might only last a couple of weeks. Yes, even after paying over three hundred thousand dollars to the IRS, I could still do the things which I said and likely still have one or two hundred thousand dollars because I am not going to buy the most expensive toys or houses, I can’t live in but one house anyway.
Living well means different things to different people and how you spend your money is your business as well as what you spend it on. The main point that I am trying to get you to consider is the eternal question: Will your wealth accompany you into Heaven or will it rust here after you are gone? It will go with you if it was used in the right way here and now. No, you won’t be taking a batch of gold or silver with you but you would have rewards in Heaven if your money was used to support a homeless shelter or feed the poor in Israel. Little seeds reap big rewards in the long run.
Have you ever felt like you were all twisted up and couldn’t get undone? I have had days like this and they really aren’t that great at all, especially if you can’t figure out which way to go. Should I go left or right or should I just wait until tomorrow and try again? You and I both know that everyone feels this way at times, some days more than others. But, there is a way that you can find your way, even when you get all twisted up into a knot of emotions and problems that just don’t seem to be fixable.
Success in life as well as in business, regardless of the business you might be in, has to start with a foundation. Something that you can know in your heart is right, regardless of how the day or the week may be going. Your foundation starts with Jesus believe it or not, it is up to you. Follow the teachings found in His Word and as I have said before the book of Proverbs, especially in the New Living Translation, is the best business guide out there.
The point of this is to get your attention focused on God and His purpose for you and your life, your business. Keep it focused on Him and He will make sure that it is a success and if it is a success then you will be too. Ask Jesus to come into your life, today. Begin today to be part of His family and let Him be part of yours. Pray about your day, pray to Him to help you find your way back to Him or just come to Him if you have never known Him as Savior and Lord. Your life will never be the same and neither will your business…it will be better than it ever was!
If any of you are fathers, then Happy Father’s Day! Make it a good one and thank your Father for giving you the foundation to start with and to build upon.
Think about it!
Did you know that we have a choice to be happy every day? The concept of this is something that I never really considered until I heard about it in the news and read it one day. I just thought that you got up and your day governed your emotional state depending on whether it was a good day or not. After giving it some thought though it makes sense…your emotional state is tied to what you are thinking at the moment that you wake up in the morning. If you are assaulted with bad news from the media or a call from a bill collector, the day goes down hill from that point on UNLESS you decide to treat yourself and the rest of the day differently.
Things that happened yesterday cannot be changed. What was said ten minutes ago can’t be taken back, even though we wish that we could sometimes. The day that you wake up in, today, is fresh and new and every decision that is made in it will have an effect on the rest of the day. I have found that the best way to start the day is to begin it will a prayer. Just sitting at the breakfast table and talking to God about how thankful you are for being able to get up this morning and for the opportunities which will come during the day, whatever they might be.
God will give you the strength and the brain power to get through whatever it might be that is facing you today, but it is always best to begin the day with a conversation (prayer) with Him. At some point in the day, it is also advisable to find a quiet spot, if you can, to talk to Him again and then spend time trying to hear what He is saying to you. This means a truly quiet place, like without your cell or your computer or tablet! Get technology out of the way and let God speak to you.
Then, choose to be happy about the things which are going on in your life. The stuff that you and I hear about on the news is unrelated to us, so we can’t do anything to fix the world’s problems and we shouldn’t let the problems around us make our time, our day feel worse than it will on its own. God can handle any problem that you cast upon Him, so just do that and then enjoy the rest of your day.