A man decided that he wanted to buy a boat, so he started saving. Every month he would transfer money from his checking account into his savings account. When he had finally saved enough, he went down to the bank to withdraw everything to purchase his new boat. But when he got there, he was told that there was a problem. The banker had a personal need, so he took and spent all the man’s money on himself! At first, the man thought it was a joke, but he soon realized that the banker was telling the truth and that all of his hard earned money was gone.
I heard that story recently in a class I took. Obviously, this isn't a real story, but I think we would all be furious to find out that a banker had spent all the money that we had entrusted to that bank. It is, after all, OUR hard earned money, right? Yet so many times, we are like the banker. God makes deposits into our lives and He expects us to properly manage the assets that He has entrusted to us.
IS OUR MONEY REALLY OURS?
Wealth and honor come from You; You are the ruler of all things… But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? Everything comes from You, and we have given You only what comes from Your hand. - 1 Chronicles 29:12, 14
What about our home, our car, our clothing, our toys?
What about our job? Our ministry?
The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it… Psalm 24:1
IN HIS HANDS
It's not as difficult a concept to realize and accept that everything we have belongs to the Lord. It is in His hands and according to His power that He gives and takes away as He wills it (Job 1:21), but it is much harder to remember that I also am not my own and do not have the right to do as I please. Even in my sleeping and rising, in my working and playing, in my eating and entertainment, all of these things have more purpose than I usually choose to dwell on.
In My Utmost for His Highest, Oswald Chambers writes,
“Do you not know that…you are not your own? - 1 Corinthians 6:19
There is no such thing as a private life, or a place to hide in this world, for a man or woman who is intimately aware of and shares in the sufferings of Jesus Christ. God divides the private life of His saints and makes it a highway for the world on one hand and for Himself on the other. No human being can stand that unless he is identified with Jesus Christ. We are not sanctified for ourselves. We are called into intimacy with the gospel, and things happen that appear to have nothing to do with us. But God is getting us into fellowship with Himself. Let Him have His way. If you refuse, you will be of no value to God in His redemptive work in the world, but will be a hindrance and a stumbling block.” (Chambers, 1935)
MY LIFE BELONGS TO THE LORD
I have been challenged to consider all of “my” life, even little choices in light of this truth: All of “my” life belongs to the Lord and is for the sake of ministry. It may be simple, but I desire these words to be true about me:
Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much. - Luke 12:10-12