Monday, September 24, 2012

What's in Your Wallet?

There can be no doubt that this possessive clinging to things is one of the most harmful habits in the [christian] life. Because it is so natural, it is rarely recognized for the evil that it is. But its outworkings are tragic. 

A. W. Tozer

Right now that this very minute I have a $5.00 bill, three debit cards from my local credit unions, my AARP card (don't laugh), my disabled parking permit identification card, my Washington Driver's License, Safeway Club Card, Fred Meyers Reward Card, and a Wilco Membership card. Oh and I have a spare office key, spare house key, and a spare car door key in case I am locked out of one of those three places.

You ask why the inventory and the question? Wednesday, at our bible study we talked about "giving." Yes, I said the "G" Word. Of course a few of our members were raised under the erroneous idea that tithing was a new testament requirement. Thank God that Paul wrote two chapters to the Corinthians about giving. In I Corinthians 8 and 9 we have some very definite principles about giving.

My point is not to rehash the "tithe" "no tithe" argument. I write to encourage you to do as we concluded Wednesday evening, give from a grateful and humbled heart to those who have legitimate needs generously and cheerfully.

I don't have the gift of giving. My gift is teaching. However, at one point or another, every believer is encouraged, advised, admonished, and even instructed to exercise characteristics of all the gifts. This means, that even though my primary responsibility to the body of Christ is to teach the scriptures making them plain and clear, I am to give. I am to love to give and I am to worship God with and by my giving. That is why my wallet is usually empty or has a lone $5.00 bill.

This is not to my credit. Quite frankly I am just like you. I am prone to selfishness, self-centeredness, and sensuality. I would rather spend money on me, or my family, and for pleasure. The credit goes to God and to God alone who is constantly at work changing my heart from a heart that looks inward to a heart that looks outward.

I am glad we have reached chapters 8 and 9 in Corinthians. Martin Luther once said, "There are three conversions necessary: the conversion of the heart, mind, and the purse." I am not sure if that is really true or not, but it seems to be doesn't it?  At least it give us something to think about however!

Charles Spurgeon once said, " You say, 'If I had a little more, I should be very satisfied.' You make a mistake. If you are not content with what you have, you would not be satisfied if it were doubled." I think that how we view our possessions and money is a barometer of our love, worship, and commitment to God. Let me encourage you today to do two things:

  1. Meditate heavily on II Corinthians 8:1-5, especially verse 2
  2. See what is in your wallet. If it is more than you need today, ask God for someone to invest in.
What is in your wallet?


Arlee Bird said...

I don't mind giving when I got it, but lately I've been doing more getting than giving. I'm mostly content with what I have and I can thank my wife for much of that these days.

Tossing It Out

Gregg Metcalf said...


I know the feeling. God certainly has been generous this past year or so. Glad to hear you are growing in contentment. If you want to read the greatest book on Christian contentment, get Jeremiah Burrough's The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment from Banner of Truth Trust. This book is on my list of 10 books that have changed my life. It is probably number 2 or 3 on that list. It is a must read for every believer.


Here goes Gregg, in my wallet I have credit cards, my son's address in Spain.a couple of store cards, small change and a picture of Daniel. No notes as I haven't been out to the bank to get money.