In Today’s day and age it truly is difficult to live without having to stress about money. I must admit money has never been the golden pot at the end of the rainbow for me. When I think back I can honestly say that I never really wanted, or chased after millions with an active or ambitious passion. It just wasn’t that important to me. Proverbs 30:7 has always been a core verse for me when it comes to money:
“Keep falsehood and lies far from me; give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread. 9 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”
Just give me enough. And funny enough, this is how my life has been for as long as I can remember…
But the temptation is always there, it is oh so easy to fall into a trap of wanting more. When enough isn’t enough anymore. We want more “things”. I have always associated extremely rich people as people that are arrogant, proud and selfish. This is probably incorrect and is a gross generalization, but this is how I felt and this is another reason why simply having enough has always been …enough for me. Rather avoid the temptation of becoming selfish, or proud, or arrogant.
I remember the famous scene in the movie Boiler Room, where Ben Affleck addresses a group of trainees wanting to apply for a job at a lucrative share trading company. His speech is simply fantastic, here’s a short snippet from it:
Jim Young: They say money can’t buy happiness? Well look at the fucking smile on my face. Ear to ear, baby. Anybody who tells you money is the root of all evil doesn’t fucking have any.
Therein lies the temptation…every now and then I catch myself falling into the trap of wanting more, a better car, a bigger house, a better TV, that nice holiday, and smarter whatever. Perhaps looking for happiness, perhaps not. I guess there is nothing wrong with wanting these things, even having them. Here’s the punch line: There is nothing wrong with acquiring all the “things” in the world as long as you do not find your identity in these things. I read an awesome quote the other day:
Don’t find your identity in a guess store or a BMW showroom, rather ask GOD, He knows you best.
Together with knowing where your Identity lies, and being firmly established in it, having a “gratefulness” mindset is also a great combatant against the consumerism-wanting-more animal. We constantly sit in our house and start mentioning things we are grateful for. Friends, Family, Material things we already have. Quickly your desire to want more is quenched and you feel humbled and extremely privileged. You fix your eyes on God again and thank Him, for He is the provider of all.
Then you start to learn valuable lessons like “It is better to give than to receive”, and “It is not about you”, and “Always place the needs of others above those of yourself”.