Friday, July 29, 2011

31 Days of Victory : {Day 29} Finances

Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”
Hebrews 13:5

Oh, what freedom it would be to give all we have to the poor and not be bothered by the loss of any of it. Instead most of us are bound to our possessions as if our very identity would be ripped away if we ever lost them. I’m afraid that our idea of financial freedom is to gain more finances when, in actuality, our unquenchable thirst for more holds us back from the very freedom our souls long for.

Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income. This too is meaningless” Ecclesiastes 5:10. 

If I may submit my humble opinion, it seems as if the American Dream is a vicious cycle of want more, gain more, want more, never ending in satisfaction. In his book, The Screwtape Letters, C.S. Lewis explains his belief that the enemy’s formula is to tempt us with “an ever increasing craving for an ever diminishing pleasure.” I think he might be onto something.

When I was 22 years old and still single, I was pretty proud of myself for purchasing my first home. It was in the ritzy city of sunny Scottsdale, Arizona. The housing market was booming; it seemed like a wise investment. People were flipping houses left and right, taking out home equity lines of credit and making plans with money they didn’t even have yet. Oh it seemed joyous, especially since my property value increased by tens of thousands of dollars within the first few months of ownership! But my joy didn't last long.

According to the 2008 Year-End Foreclosure Market Report there was 3,157,806 foreclosures reported across the nation. I'll spare you the details of how this came about but, after I lost well over $200,000.00 in property value and out of pocket payments, due to the economic downturn, my home was included in that number. I was physically sick from stress and I was broke. Seriously. Broke.

During that time, millions of people were left feeling desperate and afraid over the loss of their homes and jobs. Stress levels rose, marriages were strained (and even destroyed). Some people went as far as taking their own lives because of the hopelessness of their financial empires crumbling to the ground. Why do you think we were all so devastated? I believe it's because we were basing our security on that which is temporary.

I wonder why we live as if our whole purpose is to get settled on this earth. We strive and strain because our eyes have become focused on the wrong goal. We fail to realize that we were never meant to settle here. This is not our home. Don't get me wrong. I definitely believe in being a wise steward of finances. I believe in getting out of debt, in saving and I strongly believe in regularly giving cheerfully. However, there is something incredibly beautiful I learned through all that was lost...

When you have nothing left, you realize that God is all you need.

At times I catch myself reaching, striving and straining all over again for the riches this world has to offer. However, each time, I'm reminded that, though money is necessary to live, it is not where our provision comes from. No matter how secure the investment seems or how hard we’ve worked day and night to achieve that security, when we measure our stability on our financial achievements, or lack there of, we have treasured a fleeting dream. 

Cast but a glance at riches, and they are gone, for they will surely sprout wings and fly off to the skyline like an eagle.” – Proverbs 23:5

I'd rather place my hope in something that doesn't fluctuate with the market trends, something secure, Someone who offers secure promises that will never fail. I'd rather choose a faith investment that yields a reward far greater than anything this world could ever offer. I'd rather choose Yahweh, who promises to supply all my needs according to the riches of His glory in Christ Jesus {Philippians 4:19}. 

Here I am, stepping out on a limb. I'm looking back at you. My hand is reaching out. Will you choose to invest in faith with me? 

With God, victory is certain. 

Monique Zackery

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  1. Monique, you are definitely on to something here. Trust in God will always be better than trust in posessions, and in obedience to God, I think we need to step back from our idolatry of stuff. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Monique,
    What a blessing it is to connect with you. Thank you for taking the suggestion to visit my blog. In turn, I hopped over to yours. What a great site. I followed via email!
    I'll look forward to getting better acquainted.
    Have a wonderful weekend...

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. "When you have nothing left, you realize God is all you need." Amen, Monique! This blog is like water to a thirsty soul. Btw, I've sent this to a friend in a difficult financial situation.

  5. Oh Monique, this is good stuff!


"Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones." - Proverbs 16:24