There are those who identify themselves as part of the group called, “Christians.” Their belief system holds that certain words are like swear words. In their thinking words like “prosperity,” “abundance,” “success,” or anything that has a similar connotation equates to the “dark side” of life and is a target for judgment and criticism.
I witnessed this situation earlier this week when someone I know suggested the reading of a book that spoke about awesomeness. You would have thought this individual was promoting the spread of the plague.
For me, being the best version of ourselves we can be, making the use of our gifts and talents, and possessing the material benefits of this world is a matter of the stewardship of our lives to God. You cannot give for the benefit of others what you do not have. You cannot meet the material needs in this world if you are afraid of having those resources.
There are those who attempt to use the Scripture where Jesus tells the rich young ruler to give away all he has to the poor, as an example of what everyone ought to do. Having material possessions and giving it all away was not the focus of Jesus in this instance. Jesus was dealing with the focus of the heart and intention of this man. The motive of Jesus was to illuminate where this individual’s heart and love were centred. Money is not the root of all evil, but an over possessiveness, or love of money, that turns the situation evil.
The request in Proverb’s 30:8 for neither poverty or riches comes from a lack of wisdom and understanding (vs 2-3), but many use this as a template to suggest we should not seek to better our material lives. I contend these verses are present to provide an example of how we are not to fear the blessings of God in any area of life. Proverbs 10:22 declares, “The blessing from the Lord makes a person rich, and he adds no sorrow to it.”
As Earl Nightingale wrote, “We get what we think about, or we become what we think about, most of the time.” This applies not just in terms of abundance, but also in terms of lack. We sow what we reap.