Priorities & Perspective

Last week we finished up our 3 part teaching on Life: there’s an app for that. We touched on relationships, our physical health, & what God says about our financial situations.  With the economy being the way it is; all of us need to know what God says about our finances. So let’s take a look and see what God is saying to us today.

Luke 12: 16-­‐21 (the message)

Then he told them this story: “The farm of a certain rich man produced a terrific crop. He talked to himself: ‘What can I do? My barn isn’t big enough for this harvest. ‘Then he said, ‘Here’s what I’ll do: I’ll tear down my barns and build bigger ones. Then I’ll gather in all my grain and goods, and I’ll say to myself, Self, you’ve done well! You’ve got it made and can now retire. Take it easy and have the time of your life! “Just then God showed up and said, ‘Fool! Tonight you die. And your barnful of goods—who gets it?'”That’s what happens when you fill your barn with Self and not with God.”

I think it’s interesting that we are taught from a very early age to work hard & save up so that when we turn 65 we can retire & have the time of our lives. We can buy the car we always wanted, travel to our hearts content, or just sit on our couch in our under-ware and watch tv until our eyes pop out of our head. Maybe you want to buy a condo & move to Florida; golf everyday. Is that really why God has blessed us? Did he provide for us simply so that we can indulge in everything we’ve ever wanted? I think Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived, tried this. It didn’t work out to well. At the end of his life; all of the entertainment, women, money, servants, material possessions; they left him empty.  In the end, the only thing that he said was worth anything, was to fear God and serve Him.  That brings a fullness to our lives that money never will.

It’s all about priorities & perspective.  God wants you to be blessed! He is a generous, loving, rewarding father who loves His kids and wants to give us more than we could ever imagine. However, when stuff begins to creep in and become more important than God we have misplaced the priority.  His PRESENCE should always outway His presents! It is a tragedy that people are trading valuable time with their families to work ridiculous hours to keep up with the life-styles we’ve created so that we look good to Sally down the street whom we’ve never talked to because we are so busy that we can’t see straight. But, our kids are wearing Hollister hoodies & drive the best cars & they have a big room with Ipads & MacBooks. That’s the important thing isn’t it? Absolutely NOT! Just remember, the more STUFF you buy, the more BILLS you have; with more RESPONSIBILITY to take on, &  LESS TIME you have to enjoy any of it.  Priorities.  You SERVE what’s at the top of your list! Are you serving STUFF or are you serving the SAVIOR?

Remember the rich young ruler. He literally had so much stuff that he chose to serve IT rather than GOD. He traded trusting in JESUS for trusting in JUNK.  Matthew 6:33 says to SEEK FIRST HIS kingdom & HIS righteousness and then ALL things would be added to our lives. God is saying that if we get our priorities straight we don’t have to worry about our needs being met. That’s a given!  God wants to be our FIRST priority NOT our LAST resort.

We must change our perspective about money. It is not our source of security. God IS! I love this quote by Anne Frank. She said, “No one has ever become poor by giving”. It’s the principle of sowing & reaping. It is true. You do reap what you sow. Are you sowing anything or are you hoarding what God has entrusted you with? We were called to be stewards, not storehouses. Everything we have belongs to God and we should be able to give it up in an instant if he asked us to. If we can’t; IT has become our Master.

I want to end with one last thought. The bible says that this is not our home. We are only pilgrims passing through. Owning a lot of rentals; I see people everyday who move into these practically condemned properties near mine & fill them with furniture, appliances, etc. worth thousands of dollars. There are cockroaches running around & trash outside, but yet they are putting their treasures into these temporary dwelling places.  The burglary rate is crazy in these neighborhoods and the things are stolen often. Did you know that your dream home is waiting for you? Did you know that shortly, you will be able to move into a place that God has been preparing. Why are we wasting precious resources storing up treasure HERE, when this isn’t our permanent place of residence? Why aren’t we investing everything we have into furnishing our dream home. That is where we should be storing up treasure to enjoy forever.  God’s word tells us that where are TREASURE is that is where our HEART will be also.  When our priorities are right and we have stored up treasure in heaven where moths & rust won’t corrupt; we will be excited about what’s ahead rather than feeling discouraged about all that we are leaving behind.   Stuff or Savior; Choose this day who you’ll serve.

Pastors Dave & Vanessa

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