The four money scripts were identified as money avoidance, money worship, money status, and money vigilance. These can be compared to the money sins of ingratitude, greed, covetousness, and selfishness. If you are guilty there is a way of escape. Follow these suggestions to change your attitude about your finances.
To overcome the money sin of ingratitude, thank God daily for his material blessings.
People who avoid money are essentially telling God that they do not want his gift. They are ungrateful for God’s blessing. However, Paul tells us that we should give thanks for everything. “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 NKJV.
More specifically, Paul tells this to the church at Corinth. It was a time of difficulty for the Christians in Jerusalem and Paul tells the Corinthians to prepare a monetary gift to help them. He explains that this will cause thanksgiving from the givers and the receivers. The givers are thankful that God has given them an abundance from which to share. Those that receive the gift are thankful that God provides for them. “Now may He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food, supply and multiply the seed you have sown and increase the fruits of your righteousness, while you are enriched in everything for all liberality, which causes thanksgiving through us to God. For the administration of this service not only supplies the needs of the saints, but also is abounding through many thanksgivings to God,” – 2 Corinthians 9:10-12 NKJV.
Be on the lookout for financial grace. Did you get a larger paycheck than you expected? Were you able find a great grocery coupon that helped reduce your food bill? Did you get a refund in the mail for a bill you overpaid? If you are looking for these, I believe you will find more reasons to thank God than you realized you would. Start keeping a praise journal and list all of these money graces God gives you.
To overcome the money sin of greed, trust God to supply all your needs.
Jesus made it clear that just as God feeds the birds and clothes the lilies, he will care for you, also. We shouldn’t worry and constantly be making money our highest priority. “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.” – Matthew 6:31-32 NKJV.
Instead of worrying that we won’t have enough money, we should instead trust God to provide what we need. “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” – Proverbs 3:5-6 NKJV. If you need something, ask God to provide for you. “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;” – Philippians 4:6 NKJV.
God wants you to depend on him and not on your money. Money comes and goes, but God is always near and hears us when we call. “And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:6, 19 NKJV. So, develop a habit of remembering to rely on God, who fills your barns with plenty and overflows your vats with new wine, anytime you begin to feel anxious about having enough.
To overcome the money sin of covetousness, understand your self-worth is how God sees you and not how people judge.
“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.” – Exodus 20:17 NKJV.
When God created his list of Top Ten Commandments, he concluded the list with “Thou shalt not covet…” God tells us specifically not to covet houses, wives, servants and livestock. These items were not mass produced. The only way you get a wife like your neighbor’s is to take his. Of course, the command concludes with, “…or anything that is your neighbor’s.” That doesn’t mean you can’t like your neighbor’s new car and go buy the same model. But you must be careful with your heart.
Coveting your neighbor’s possessions is wrong in two aspects. The first concerns intensity. It is not sinful to admire the things your neighbor has. It is wrong when that admiration turns to the type of want that goes to the extreme to get it. You may like your neighbor’s car. But, if you go to that intense desire to get a car like his just because he has one, you are guilty of covetousness.
The second aspect where you are guilty is when you are keeping score and competing. You must have a bigger house because your neighbor’s house is big. Never compare wives. You are stepping over a line even if you simply are admiring your neighbor’s wife.
To overcome covetousness, you must learn the secret of contentment. Paul tells us, “Now godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content.” – 1 Timothy 6:6-8 NKJV.
To overcome the money sin of selfishness, give generously.
Selfishness is your problem if you hide and hoard money. Jesus tells this parable:
Then He spoke a parable to them, saying: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded plentifully. And he thought within himself, saying, ‘What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?’ So he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build greater, and there I will store all my crops and my goods.’ And I will say to my soul, ‘Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry.’
But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?’ So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.” – Luke 12:16-21 NKJV.
So, unless you want God to call you a fool, don’t hoard God’s blessings.
Instead, be generous and give. Paul says, “I have shown you in every way, by laboring like this, that you must support the weak. And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.'” – Acts 20:35 NKJV.
Giving affects more than just our attitude. Generosity opens the windows of heaven. The more we give, the more with which we are entrusted. “But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.” – 2 Corinthians 9:6 NKJV. Hiding your money is like saving a handful of water. It just won’t last. Give it away and trust that another will supply you in your time of need. Generosity is the cure for selfishness and God will reward our stewardship. “For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance… “ – Matthew 25:29 NKJV.
To learn more, see Part One of this article here.
Or you can purchase the book that started it all, Financially Faithful, on Amazon.
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