Can Money Buy Happiness?
Not too long ago, I had the pleasure of hearing a talk by Randy Alcorn, author of The Treasure Principle and a man who I respect deeply. Randy’s personal story is one of commitment to God’s call, surrender of personal resources, and a deep desire to see American Christians freed from the myth that money equals happiness. Randy’s message reminded us that, since happiness is a heart issue, and since Jesus said that, “where your treasure is, there your heart will be also,” then Christians will only find authentic contentment by investing in eternal things.
We live in a world that is violently opposed to the truth of God. Only when we dwell on His truth and walk in it, will we experience freedom from the grip of the money myths that are pervasive in our society. What are the truths about money, as revealed in God’s Word?
First of all, money is a tool. (Philippians 4:11-13) Money and material possessions are effective tools that God uses in our lives to help us to grow and mature. Our money and its pervasive influence in our lives is a way that God gets our attention and teaches us about Him and about ourselves.
Secondly, money is a test. (Luke 16:11-12) Jesus makes it clear that somehow our eternal position and reward are determined by our faithfulness in handling resources that have been entrusted to us by God. Although it is a mystery, the Bible is clear that our use of today’s finite resources determine something eternal and permanent for us.
Thirdly, money is a testimony. (Matthew 5:13 – 16) In this passage in Matthew, Jesus tells us that we are salt and light in the world. The way we handle God’s resources is a huge part of the testimony that we display to the world each day.
Today, if you are tempted to buy into the money myth that money equals happiness, remember that contentment comes from investing in the eternal, and remember that Jesus’ teaching on money can be an anchor for you when you are tempted to believe the world’s lies about money.