In a few days, I’ll draw a name to win a copy of one of my books, The Stained Glass Pickup or A Scrapbook of Christmas Firsts. Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a comment here for the November drawing.
Roots are showing. No. Not dark roots on a bleached blond. The roots I’m thinking about sprout from a love of money. Although misquoted often in modern times, Paul wrote to the young preacher Timothy that, “The love of money is a root for all kinds of evil” (1 Timothy 6:10).
Throughout the ages, that prolific love-of-money root has produced a variety of heartaches and misery. And the results aren’t so pretty. Friends bring me a flowering branch and tell me, “Oh, just stick it in some water-it’ll grow roots.” The love of money doesn’t even need a friendly environment to re-shape itself into very large global problems.
Try this experiment -- watch any newscast and see how many wrongs happen because someone adores money. Of course we can’t assume motivations behind criminal activity, but it’s pretty obvious in some cases that love of money effects harm, such as in drug cartels. It seems they have forgotten the damage and human suffering, and their goal is to get the drugs on the street and pocket the money.
Anyone who has money is subject to temptation. Gum chewing clerk or CEO can both fall prey to the talons of the fleeting dollar. Men and women, boys and girls can have wholesome hearts about money or be filled with greed. We’re all somewhere in the cash register between those two extremes.
Here’s a question to consider: Living in the economy of today, what if the only cash you had was two pennies? What would your attitude be toward your two cents? “I’m down to my last two cents” would certainly express relevancy.
When Jesus watched the widow walk toward the temple collection box, he didn’t need to see a bank statement to assess her worth. He knew that the two coins she had were the only two she possessed. She was down to an equivalent in our economy of two pennies, nearly nothing. She didn’t trust the two coins to absolve her poverty. She had lavish trust in God and left the details of her life fully in his hands. She didn’t love her two coins.
Jesus said about her fearless heart that she had given all “she had to live on.” To have that kind of faith in God’s care and his storehouse of provisions must be freeing, very freeing from a love of money.
I brought up the subject of money today because many will be spending it. Today is often referred to as “Black Friday” because this is when many retail stores begin to show a profit. The love of money has a huge price tag. Don’t pay it. Ralph Waldo Emerson knew the consequences because he said, “Money often costs too much.”