A short reading and prayers for today
If your wealth increases, don’t make it the centre of your life.
Psalm 62:10 NLT
It’s interesting how often the issue of wealth comes up in the Bible. Psalm 112 gives an attractive picture of the person who follows the Lord. Such a person takes delight in the Lord’s commands and we are told that even in the darkness, the light shines for them. They are also described as being wealthy and at the same time generous and compassionate. Everything that we have is a gift from God and so whatever we have should be a cause for rejoicing, whether it is great or little. But the challenge comes when wealth increases because possessions are always greedy for our attention. They want to become the main focus of our life, and that’s when the rot sets in. Only God deserves that place and that’s exactly what our verse today is warning us about. We should ensure that wealth never takes centre stage in our lives.
The book of Proverbs is wonderfully helpful on the subject of wealth. It often warns against the dangers of idleness and applauds hard work and recognises that it often leads to wealth. Proverbs 10.4 puts the situation bluntly “Lazy people are soon poor; hard workers get rich.” But at the same time the writer often speaks about the importance of generosity. It isn’t God’s desire that we build up huge resources for ourselves and neglect the poor. Proverbs also recognises that the accumulation of wealth can be exhausting and we should therefore make sure that we don’t overdo it. In Proverbs 23.4-5 he writes, “Don’t wear yourself out trying to get rich. Be wise enough to know when to quit. In the blink of an eye wealth disappears, for it will sprout wings and fly away like an eagle.” What wise words those are! Money comes and goes and so we would be foolish to focus all our attention on it.
The point is clear. Whether you have much or little, thank God for what you have and make sure that you make him the permanent centre of your life, and not money or anything else which has a limited shelf life.
What is at the centre of your life?
Lord God, thank you for the resources that you have given to me. Help me to use them to bring blessing to you and those around me. Amen
Sovereign God, you make us for each other, to live in loving community as friends, sons and daughters, sisters and brothers, wives and husband, partners and companions. Teach us to choose love that is committed and devoted; teach us like little children to wonder and to trust, that our loving may reflect the image of Christ. Amen.