This week, Financial Advisor Brandon Weibe joined the bustling morning math crew that I teach to talk about getting rich quick! … Or more like living a financially wise life and making decisions at a young age that will benefit them for the long haul (They were more interested in getting rich quick!) Several weeks ago I asked students what was their biggest fear was about the future – and many of them said, “Not having the money to do the things I would like to do in life.” Yes, life is more than money, and God himself says money is the root of all evil. However, money itself is not evil – Money builds wells for clean water, finances libraries to store the knowledge of the world, feeds families, provides electricity and equipment for hospitals and schools, ensures the care of the elderly, the sick, the challenged, and all of the vulnerable and defenseless. Money provides opportunities for people to reach their full potential, and fulfill their calling – to contribute positively to the world.
No, Money is not the root of all evil. The love of money is. What we love most, we give our time to, we seek security in, we think about, and we serve. Money is simply a tool that we can use to do the things God has put us here to do – and learning practical wisdom in this area of life is wise!
Like so many areas of life, being financially wise is less about knowing the right things to do, and more about having the discipline and ability to actually do them.
In Brandon’s presentation, he pointed to the famous financial tidbits of Dave Ramsey who says, “Finance is 20% head knowledge and 80% behavior.” Getting head knowledge is easy, changing behavior is hard.
I think this is why Jesus asked the blind man at the pool of Bathesda, “Do you want to be healed” before strangely reaching out to smudge mud in his eyes and set his life on an altered course. A first glimpse of this story leads a person to think Of course the man wanted to be healed! What a ridiculous question! However, as I walked on those very pool steps just over a week ago, I thought about all the ways the begger’s life changed in the mud moment. His business had been to beg – it is all he had ever known. This was his source of income and how he had learned to get by in the world. Healing meant learning a new way. Healing meant change. Healing meant the people around him were troubled and upset. Healing meant letting go of old habits and letting God work new things through the making of messy mud.
Sometimes, it’s hard to do the things we need to do to pursue long-term benefits. The short-term muddy discomfort can deter us, but if we are willing to let Jesus work in the mud of our lives, he will create the most amazing, purpose-filled contented days in our hearts. You can trust him enough to change, grow and adapt in the ways that will bring health to your life. Sometimes, the first step to long-term benefits is saying yes to the short-term mud.
“When Jesus had said this, He spat on the ground, made some mud, and applied it to the man’s eyes. Then He told him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which means Sent). So the man went and washed, and came back seeing.” – John 9:6-7