Why Your Money May Be Funny, and Your Change May Be Strange
It goes without saying that many of the difficult financial circumstances we face are a result of our own doing. Sometimes we make bad financial decisions, purchasing things on impulse, buying stuff we can’t afford, failing to save money or refusing to seek wise counsel. However, financial woes aren’t always our fault. Every now and then something unexpected pulls the rug out from under us financially. When that happens, you must believe Romans 8:28 NAS, “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good, to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”
Beyond the obvious practical explanations, your money may be funny for four primary reasons:
1. Spiritual Warfare
There are times you can do all the right things you know to do financially—budget wisely, give generously, save consistently—and things still don’t work out; all hell breaks loose! At times it may seem like for every step you take forward, you take two steps backward. That’s because a lot of financial adversity is the result of spiritual warfare. This is activity we can’t see with our natural eyes, but it’s still going on. That’s why Ephesians 6:12 (NAS) states, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.”
The last thing the enemy wants to see in the life of a Christian is financial prosperity, especially when it is accompanied by contentment and a Kingdom perspective. People who are financially free to serve Christ are a threat to the kingdom of darkness. That’s why the enemy does everything he can to discourage us financially; he wants to keep us broke and ignorant of God’s financial principles. The mistake a lot of us make is that we try to fight spiritual battles with physical weapons. That’s like trying to shoot an elephant with a BB gun... it isn’t going to work! To fight spiritual battles you need spiritual weapons.
Prayer, fasting, reading, and meditating on the Word of God are spiritual weapons that must be unleashed in your life if you want to reach your financial destiny. This artillery is just as important, if not more important, than budgeting, saving, investing, and spending wisely.
2. The Discipline of the Lord
God may be withholding financial resources from our lives because of sin and disobedience. He knows how to get our attention and touches our wallets or purses to say straighten up and fly right! Believe me when I say that you can’t live any kind of way and still expect God to bless you financially. God often uses difficult financial situations to get us to abandon our sin and get back on track spiritually. Hebrews 12:6 (NAS) says, “For those whom the Lord loves He disciplines…” It is never pleasant to be corrected and disciplined by God, but that discipline is a sign of His deep love for us.
3. To Accomplish the Will of the Lord
Sometimes God uses our problems, setbacks and disappointments to fulfill His ultimate plan for our lives. Quite often, God has something bigger and better for us, but we don’t know it and can’t see it.
This is illustrated in the life of Joseph who was sold into slavery as a teenager, accused of rape, and put in jail. All the while God was using Joseph’s setbacks as a setup for a greater success. The evil actions of Joseph’s brothers were used to fulfill God’s ultimate plan, which was to preserve their lives, save Egypt, and prepare the way for the beginning of the nation of Israel. Check out Joseph’s response to his brothers, who plotted evil against him, “As far as I am concerned, God turned into good what you meant for evil. He brought me to the high position I have today so I could save the lives of many people” (Genesis 50:20 NLT).
Suppose that God is using your current situation to set you up for something greater! Here you are crying over that $60,000 a year job you lost, while God is trying to get you in position to earn hundreds of thousands of dollars a year! Consider that your disappointments are simply God’s appointments.
4. To Develop Character
Romans 5:3-4 (NAS) reads, “We also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulations bring about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character.” Nobody likes to go through tough financial times; however, sometimes our character can only be developed in the midst of trying times. The problems that we face will develop our perseverance, which in turn will strengthen our character, deepen our trust in God, and give us greater confidence regarding our financial future.
Isn’t it good to know that God is in complete control of every financial situation that you will ever face? No matter how funny your money is right now, rest assured that God is in control and intends to use everything you’re going through for His good purpose.