Four Things You Shouldn't Do with Your Money
“Guard against every kind of greed. Life is not measured by how much you own.” (Luke 12:15, NLT)
God wants you to think smart about your money.
Jesus tells the story of a rich man who enlisted a manager to take care of his property (Luke 16). When the manager was accused of mishandling his master’s money and was called in to give an account of his stewardship, the manager devised a plan. He knew he was going to lose his job but decided to make some friends who would take care of him when he was fired. So, he summoned everyone who owed his master money and lowered their debt; if someone owed 800 gallons of olive oil, he told them to change their bill to 400 gallons.
When the master heard what the manager had done, he “had to admire the dishonest rascal for being so shrewd. And it is true that the children of this world are more shrewd in dealing with the world around them than are the children of the light” (Luke 16:8 NLT).
Jesus doesn’t praise the manager’s dishonesty, but he does praise his shrewdness. What is shrewdness? To be shrewd means you’re smart, strategic, and resourceful. You see a problem clearly, know what needs to be done, and then figure out how to do it. God wants you to learn how to be biblically shrewd with your money.
This story teaches four things you shouldn’t do with your money.
Don’t waste your money. Luke 16:1 says, “A report came that the manager was wasting his employer’s money” (NLT). Everything you have—including your money—belongs to God and is a gift from him. So you have to be careful not to waste what belongs to your master.
Don’t love your money. You’ve got to decide if God is number one in your life or if making a lot of money is number one. You cannot make both your top priority.
The Bible says, “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money” (Luke 16:13 NLT).
Don’t trust your money. No matter how much money you’ve got—you can always lose it. The manager learned this pretty quickly in Luke 16:3: “Now what? My boss has fired me” (NLT).
If you want to be secure, the center of your life has to be something that can never be taken from you. And there’s only one thing that you can never lose: God’s love for you.
Don’t expect your money to satisfy. If you think having more money will make you happier, more secure, or more valuable, you are seriously misguided. Money will never satisfy: “Those who love money will never have enough. How meaningless to think that wealth brings true happiness!” (Ecclesiastes 5:10 NLT).
That’s why Jesus says in Luke 12:15, “Guard against every kind of greed. Life is not measured by how much you own” (NLT).
Talk It Over
How will you spend your money differently now that you know all your money really belongs to God?
If others looked at your life and how you handle your money, what would they say is most important to you?
How can you be ambitious and satisfied with your income at the same time?
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This devotional © 2022 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.