What does it take to harvest spiritual abundance? A lot of money! That’s probably NOT the answer you thought I’d say. What does money have to do with being spiritual? Aren’t most rich people unspiritual? Well, that certainly is an idea that some people hold to. After all, the Bible says it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God (Matt. 19:24). Let’s have some fun and connect money to the fruit of the Spirit.
The Bible has a lot to say about money. In fact, Jesus talks more about money than anything else except for the Kingdom of God. He knows that money is important and that it has immense power in our lives. It can help us accomplish God’s purpose and can also cause us to be ineffective for Him. The way we think about money has an effect on the fruit of the Spirit God produces through us. The Fruit of the Spirit refers to nine qualities: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. We’ve been discussing some important questions that we’ve called the roots beneath this fruit. This article will address the topic of money, discover how it affects the fruit that the Holy Spirit produces through us, and answer the Rooted question, “What about money?”.
First, Meet Little Pot
The characters in a series of children’s picture books help us understand how the fruit of the Spirit grows. First, we meet a vessel named Little Pot. The Little Pot wonders why the potter created it. After being given different things to hold, it discovers the potter wants to grow fruit through it. Likewise, we are vessels where our creator desires to produce His fruit through us. The qualities of Little Pot’s Humus, seed, stem, leaves, and flowers lead to strawberries. Comparatively, God cultivates the fruit of the Spirit through humility, God’s Word, integrity, relationships, and knowledge. You can receive details about that process by signing up here:
Spiritual Abundance and the Love of Money
The fruit of the Spirit begins with love. Throughout Jesus’ ministry, He tells us that everything must be done in love (1 Corinthians 16:14). You may be thinking, that’s okay because I love to spend money! However, if you want spiritual abundance in your life, you have to decide what (or who) you love most. In Matthew 6:24, Jesus makes it clear, that we cannot serve two masters. We will hate one and love the other. Therefore, we cannot love both God and money. A past question from our Rooted study was about spiritual warfare. Making Christ our master and not money is a spiritual warfare battle that we must win. So, let’s keep going.
Does Money bring Joy?
If you make a list of the things that bring you joy, you might find that a lot of items on the list require money. The joy from the Holy Spirit, however, is a lasting joy that is not dependent on things, circumstances, or money. Spiritual abundance comes from knowing that Jesus died to save us from our sins and that nothing can separate us from His love (Romans 8:38-39). If you believe that He died for you and have entered into a relationship with Him, that idea will fuel your joy when you have money and when you do not. Besides, allowing Jesus to save you from your sin costs nothing! He paid the price and it is a FREE gift to anyone willing to take it!
Peace, Spiritual Abundance, and Money
Let’s be real, we want to think that money does not have power over us. However, when we lose money we may lose peace. We look to our finances to give us peace and security instead of the Holy Spirit. We forget that our trust must rest in God alone. The U.S. currency includes the motto “In God We Trust.” The saying, adopted in the mid-fifties was to remind us that the political and economic prosperity of the nation is in God’s hands. Our peace must not rest in how much money we have. In John 14:27, Jesus says, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give you as the world gives. Do not let your heart be troubled and do not be afraid.”
Debt and Patience
We live in a world that requires debt. From homes, cars, college educations, to just about anything we need before having the money will cause us to accumulate debt. The idea that we get something now and pay for it later is just the way our world operates. God tells us, however, that we are not to conform to the patterns of this world (Romans 12:2). While we cannot avoid all debt, it should not be the pattern we follow for living. It takes patience to wait to buy things until we have saved enough money. Patience is a part of the fruit the Holy Spirit grows through us. Therefore, a life of spiritual abundance is one of a lot of patience and little debt.
Giving Kindness and Money
A great way to think of your money is that you do not own it. God owns it and He has entrusted you to manage it. If God entrusts you with a lot or a little, He expects you to manage it well. Managing God’s money means we live on a budget. Most Christian financial advisors recommend we give 10%, save 10%, and spend 80%. Giving is an act of worship. Proverbs 3:9-10 tells us to honor God with our wealth and give Him the first fruits of crops, or in our case, the first money in our budget. Likewise, kindness is the characteristic within the fruit of the Spirit that puts others first. Giving to God means we give to others and show kindness with our finances.
Greed is Good or God is Good?
When we are unwilling to give money, we are being greedy. Gordan Gekko was a character in the 1987 movie, Wall Street. His quote, “Greed is good,” became a infamous saying that many people began to live by. Interestingly, a few years later, it became popular for church leaders to say to their congregations, “God is good all the time,” to which they would respond, “All the time, God is good.” These two statements where greed and God are both good cannot coexist.
Goodness is the next quality in the fruit of the Spirit. Consequently, the Holy Spirit fills us with all that is good and that allows no room for greediness. In 2010, a sequel to Wall Street came out. In this movie, the character Gordan Gekko gives a speech that explains how greed is what led the worldview to buy on credit and debt mentioned above.
Being Faithful with Money will Harvest Spiritual Abundance
The next characteristic in the list of the fruit is faithfulness. Our finances and money is an area where faithfulness needs to abound. Seeing our money as God intends us to is how we can harvest spiritual abundance. However, that sight cannot be hindsight or a moment in time. We must be faithful in our finances and follow these principles continually. Doing so requires gentleness and self-control.
Gentle Money and Self-Control
The final traits within the fruit of the Spirit are gentlenss and self-control. Finances should be handeled gently. Include God in your financial decisions. Use self-control in your spending. Your finances will reflect the fruit of the Spirit your life grows.
Conclusion: Reaping the Rewards of Spiritual Abundance
Now, back to that camel and the eye of the needle. The”Eye of the Needle” is claimed to have been a narrow gateway into Jerusalem. Since camels were large and heavily loaded with goods and riders, they would need to be un-loaded and stoop down in order to pass through. In the previous verses a rich young ruler asked Jesus what he must do to inherit eternal life. Jesus replies he must sell all that he has, give to the poor, and follow Him. In other words, he must be like the camel willing to give up his wealth, humble himself, and bow down to follow Christ. Only with Jesus can we harvest spiritual abundance.
In conclusion, money gives us an opportunity to be fruit-bearers and live a life of spiritual abundance. Like Little Pot, we need to become the vessels our potter uses and grows fruit through. Add your first name and email below, and we’ll send you the seven steps to the Holy Spirit growing fruit through your life. Additionally, you will receive a Fruitful Friday email each week to continue to … “Learn a lot from Little Pot!”
The Rooted Bible Study
This article is a part of a Bible study called Rooted. The root system inside Little Pot is intertwined and hard to break. Consequently, we’ve been digging it up to answer complex questions about God and life. Here is a list of the questions we are investigating. Feel free to click on the different questions to learn more. A workbook is available for further study.
- Who is God?
- How do I Know When God Speaks to me?
- Where is God When it Hurts?
- Who is the enemy, and How to fight with spiritual warfare weapons?
- How will my life have a positive impact?
- Serving God by serving others: How can I make the most of my life?
- What about money?
- How and why should I tell others?
- Is church important?
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