In the last 2 Life Palette posts I have shared a story of how my kids gave me some great lessons about God as we shared moments around french fries. Check them out here.
Just like my kids, when it comes to everything we have, we need to understand our loving, Heavenly Father provided it all. And in truth, if He wanted He could take everything; after all He’s God, the Creator of the universe. Or, He could give us more than we ever dreamed. There’s no limit to His resources. The Scriptures tell us that the earth is the Lord’s and everything in it. The psalmist writes that He owns “the cattle on a thousand hills.” (Psalms 50:9) Yet how often do we see ourselves pulling back our “french fries,” telling Him those are “our fries” and to “leave them alone”? As though He needs our fries!
When it comes to being faithful with all God has given us, it’s not that our loving, Heavenly Father wants to take something from us; He wants us to willingly give what our money, our things and our possessions represent: our hearts. How crazy is it to think for a moment that God needs our money? That’s like thinking I needed my children’s french fries, as if they didn’t share with me I would go without. It would be as if I would be lost without their generosity and couldn’t come up with my own fries. No, I just wanted them to have thankful hearts and loving attitudes towards me as their dad.
Every day, like most of us, you probably get up, go to work and trade your time and skills, in fact your life, for money. You may push back on that thought; I know I do. I am so passionate about living my life mission and purpose I want to believe I would do my job for free if necessary. But truth be told, like most of you, if my employer could no longer pay me I’d eventually have to look for another job; I too need money to pay the bills and eat fries. There’s nothing wrong with needing money; after all money comes in pretty handy here on earth. It’s the system we have to provide for our children, to provide for our communities and to meet the needs of those in crisis around us. But when we are more consumed with money than we are with the love of our Heavenly Father, and when our hearts are bent toward pursuing the things of this world more than Him, it’s a problem. The reason it’s a problem, God wants nothing to stand between us and Him. He created us to have a love relationship with Him as sons and daughters. He wants us to trust Him so completely as our provider that He can direct us to take all He’s given to be used wherever He wants to meet the needs of His kingdom and to carry out His plan.
The danger is money and all it can buy begins to possess our hearts. God, our provider, wants nothing and no one in possession of our hearts except Him. For the hearts He rules, He promises to provide for all their needs: “And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your (my) needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us (me) in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19) No one else and nothing else can make that promise and keep it. Money cannot make that promise, our homes or cars nor any of our material possessions can make that promise. Only God our loving, Heavenly Father, through Christ Jesus, is able to make and keep that promise. Why? Because He is God; He does not need money or things. He owns it all and created it all. He can still create should He choose. What He wants from us is the one thing He’s given us the power to choose – a loving relationship with Him as His children.