Spiritual Riches vs. Worldly Riches
By Angie Lewis
The blessing of the Lord brings wealth, and he adds no trouble
Proverbs 10: 22
I’m in the middle of reading Joel Osteen’s book, Your Best Life Now and I feel myself becoming inspired greatly. Osteen likes to make people feel good; he peps them up with wonderful sounding words to get people to reach their potential in life. But is it reality to think that just by our thoughts we can meet our potential and become successful in life? Yes, it is true, we have the ability to think ourselves to riches. What we think and believe on a continual basis we generate, through our actions, into our lives.
For instance, if we continually think the grass is greener on the other side of the fence, we will keep trespassing on someone else’s turf, either through envy and jealousy or through lust and desire. But when we already know that our own grass is green, we make it even more green and lush. The moral is: Don’t worry about your neighbor’s grass or you will neglect your own.
Don’t seek happiness in worldly riches or you will neglect your spiritual riches. But seek first God’s kingdom and righteousness.
Here is what many of these “feel good” preachers neglect to tell their readers and listeners. God does not necessarily want Christians to be rich and successful by the world’s standards. Have we thought about that when we listen and read sermons about getting rich and successful? We need to understand that the world’s meaning of riches and success are not the same as God’s meaning of riches and success. Why would God want His children to work their buns off to get rich in this world and not have any time for Christian stewardship?
God’s Word does not teach Christians to reach for worldly riches. Christ’ principles teach the Way that leads to spiritual riches where love, hope, forgiveness and eternal life abide. The distressing part about it is Christians are being lead to believe that to be happy and content in this life they should strive to be rich and successful. But that’s not where happiness happens to be. Ironically, happiness is among our spiritual wealth.
For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wondered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.
1 Timothy 6:10 NIV
These preachers are leading people down the wrong path! The wrong path leads Christians further away from God and God’s standards. They like to throw the word “Christ” and “God” into their materials once in awhile so people will stay connected to God in some small way, but worldly riches are not where the kingdom of God is. Inferring the only way for happiness in life is through gaining through material wealth is deceiving.
Of course, don’t misunderstand, this does not mean that a rich Christian cannot be saved, but as we know it, it is much more difficult to tackle the job of riches and the job of Christian stewardship at the same time. Usually one of these vocations will get neglected because it takes a lot of work to be rich in this world. It is much more difficult to do the things of God when we are busy doing the things that lead to worldly riches. Not only that, but as we strive for our worldly status, much of it goes contrary to the word of God and you know what that means don’t you?
In the kingdom of God riches are found in our spiritual lives. So what are these spiritual riches? Spiritual riches are the things that belong to God and that He blesses Christians with, such as wisdom, love, forgiveness, hope, the Sprit of Life, redemption, eternity and salvation. These are just some of the gifts that God enriches our lives with.
Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!
II Corinthians 9:15
Ironically, when the Christian puts his trust and faith in the things of God, like magic his life begins to be filled with blessings and abundance. When we put our faith and hope in spiritual riches God gives us what we need in this world to live comfortable, happy, peaceful lives. Put your trust and faith in God and He will provide!
So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ ‘What shall we drink’? Or ‘What shall we wear’? For the pagans run after all of these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.