Years ago, as a younger believer, I was drawn to this crazy music group named Raspberry Jam. Tonight they came roaring back into my head. They did a song that I think was called “Everything We Need”. It was a perfect indictment of our consumer culture. At one point in the song the guy is asking if he is supposed to sell everything he has to give it to the poor and asks, “What am I?!? the rich man???” Well, the short answer(the same one he is getting at in the song) is YES!! At least, if you are reading this I would assume that it is true of you as much as it is of me. We are rich beyond compare. We have no idea how rich we truly are. I was reading Luke 12 tonight and used part of it for the devotional that I write.
32 “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. 34 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Lately there is an abundance of stories in the media highlighting potential and real financial disasters. The media is looking to get people all worked up and panicked that their treasures are going down the drain. So it is refreshing to see a story that shows that some believers have got their perspective straight. I am a regular reader at Internet Monk and he has started a new site called Jesus Shaped Spirituality. He has a challenging post up right now that strikes at one of the hearts of our discipleship. Can we put our money where our beliefs are? He linked up to a story about a church that is committing to give away 60% of their budget to missions. That isn’t a typo and they aren’t crazy. This is a group of people committed to taking what Jesus said and living it in their lives. I not only applaud them for it; it makes me want to stand up and say God use my church like this.
The idea of giving has always been a struggle for me. I always thought the idea that it was more blessed to give than to receive was weird. When I took those spiritual gifts inventories that you take in some churches, I would generally score worst on giving(including one time that I got a zero). I am not proud of that fact. It has been one of the things that God has been gracious to deal with me and help me to grow. I have gotten better. I have a wife who gives without thinking twice and is so generous it was bound to rub off (great blessing from God). I have also been greatly encouraged by books like The Treasure Principle by Randy Alcorn, which helped me to make huge strides in my attitude toward giving. Hopefully, you can start to understand that looking at the idea of Element Church in Nashville and wondering if my church can pull that off is a big deal to me. It is an even bigger testament to God’s transformational power in a life. I am praying for Element as they step out boldly in a way that few churches would dare. I am praying that God would give me the courage to follow Him at all costs. The passage from Luke is clear. I can’t try and twist it around and say it doesn’t apply me because I am not rich. The words of Yeshua ring through the centuries. Where is your treasure?