This Economy & Eternity
The pressures and problems being created by the economy are affecting all of us. People who used to read only the comics, entertainment or sport page are now scanning the business section for a glimmer of hope. These economic woes are global.
Now, the older and younger generations chastened by this depression are afraid to be optimistic. Economic advisers are perplexed. In short, there is widespread confusion, concern and fear. And we are seeing the results of this situation in the increase of divorces, homelessness, suicides, violence and mental illness.
I am not an economist, and I have no special counsel for the people who manage our money. But I do have a few suggestions for my Christian friends, young and old, as all of us seek to weather this storm.
The greatest danger we face is forgetting that we are Christians. Beneath the weight of our concerns, we may forget values. The “care of this world and the deceitfulness of riches, may choke the Word in our hearts and rob us of a fruitful harvest of spiritual things.
The first Christians were mostly poor people. Even its leaders, Peter and John, had to admit to a beggar “Silver and gold I have none.”
The church has weathered many a storm. And with faith in God, it can weather this one. — Nehemiah rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem “even in troublesome times.” – There is always a dark cloud on the horizon. But “he who observes the wind will not sow, and he who regards the clouds will not reap.”
This is certainly not a time for our faith to fail. Instead, it is a tremendous opportunity for us to be strong and to glorify God. Let us truly be the “light set upon a hill.” Do not deviate from the path God has set before us, neither to the right nor to the left. Keep on the “straight and narrow.”
When Jesus gave his Great Commission to the church, the times were not much different than what we face today. High taxes, military expenditures, low wages, and unemployment made life dismal for many. Yet the early Christians stepped out on faith, trusted God to meet their needs, sacrificed and served and the Gospel spread across the world.
Jesus told us that “Without faith you can do nothing.” And King David encouraged us with these words: “Though a mighty army surrounds me, my heart will know no fear. Even if they attack me, I will remain confident… For I am constantly aware of your unfailing love…You have always been my Helper… I am confident that I will see the Lord’s goodness in the land of the living… I will be strong and courageous and wait patiently for the Lord.”
So do not hold back on doing what we are required to do as servants of the Lord. Continue to tithe “even if it hurts.” (That is where the miraculous blessing is hidden.) And continue to give to those in need and to good causes. Our Father who sees everything from heaven will reward us.
The church has always operated by faith since the beginning. True faith believes in spite of evidence; and it obeys in spite of consequence.
The ten spies of Kadesh-Barnea decided that entering the Promised Land was not safe, so they led Israel into forty years of unnecessary difficulties and wandering.
God cares about you. “How precious are your thoughts about me, O God! They are innumerable. I can’t even count them… And when I wake up in morning, you are still with me.”
Lastly, consider this: If God considered us worthy enough to give up the most precious thing he had, his only Son, what does that say about how valuable we are to him?
Keep the Faith!
P.S. Much of this was taken from a sermon by Warren Wiersbe in 1944.