When I started this series three weeks ago I said that if you got one insight out of this series this should be it: God owns it all. It’s all His and it’s my job to manage that which God has given to me. God wants us to use whatever we have been entrusted with to glorify Him. This is so essential because how we handle our finances is a spiritual matter.
Therefore, every Christian can improve their finances by following three really hard but really good life-long principles that will keep you moving toward financial health.
First, always seek the kingdom of God first. In Luke 12, Jesus tells the parable of a man who was never satisfied with more. He wanted more and more and more, that’s why he kept building bigger barns. Jesus then says that the man died a fool because he spent his entire life storing up earthly wealth but didn’t have a rich relationship toward God. In Matthew 6:33 Jesus says:
“33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.” Matthew 6:33
This takes us to the second life-long principle that will keep us moving in the right direction. Seek first the kingdom of God and second, believe that God will meet all your needs. Immediately after telling the parable of the rich fool he turns to his disciples who weren’t worried about building bigger barns to store their booty, they were worried about where they were going to get their next meal since they had given us everything to follow Jesus. They wanted a little bit of security and can you really blame them? But Jesus doesn’t offer them any worldly security, he offers them truth that God will provide for their needs if they put him first.
Jesus tells us that if we seek first the kingdom of God then he will meet all of our needs. Don’t get wants and needs confused. A lot of us bring about our own stress by worrying how we will pay for junk we don’t need to impress people we don’t like. We don’t need to go deep in debt to have our needs met.
“19 And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19
The only place in the Bible that God ever tells us to test him is in the area of finances. God says put me first and watch me work with the rest. Tithing is a tangible way for us to demonstrate that we seek the kingdom of God first. If you want God to bless your finances, tithing is a must. Plus, when we do it God’s way we can enjoy the remaining 90% because we know we have not robbed God, we trusted Him.
The third life-long principle that will keep us moving toward financial health is learning to live below you means so you can live above the stress. When your finances are out of control it feels like you are living in a snowstorm with bald tires and all that is going to send you into a tailspin is one unexpected expense. I’m convinced that most people can live within their means if they are willing to adjust their standard of living to their income. If we could just learn to be content with what we already have life would be simpler.
In conclusion, when our financial priorities reflect biblical realities, we will experience a new level of contentment that may have been eluding us for years. Ultimately, when we understand that everything belongs to God, we become more generous and less covetous. When we tithe and give 10% back to God, it blesses us because we get to be a part of what God is doing. When we trust God with our finances, it actually simplifies our life because it builds our trust in God. When we lower our debt many of our problems and pressures we feel become a lot smaller. And when we learn to live within our means we are able to feel more content because we are not always wanting more. God wants you to live better and to live with his blessing and he will bless you if you seek Him first and follow His financial principles.