Pause

Close your eyes and breathe deeply.

The Psalmist says to “Enjoy the LORD, and he will give what your heart asks” (Psalm 37:4).

What does your heart ask today? What is your desire?

Hold that thought as we explore this week’s theme of wisdom and wealth.

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Listen

“Whoever is faithful with little is also faithful with much, and the one who is dishonest with little is also dishonest with much. If you haven’t been faithful with worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? If you haven’t been faithful with someone else’s property, who will give you your own? No household servant can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be loyal to the one and have contempt for the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.”

Luke 16:10-13

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Think

Money is so darn alluring. Gosh, it seems you need it for everything, right? Have you ever tried going into a department store and saying, “I’d like these pants and, by the way, I’ve got no money”? You can imagine the clerk’s response. At best, he might kindly take your merchandise, smile, and move to the next customer.

So, money is necessary, but do we have to serve it? Whatever you serve, you put first. It becomes your priority. If you serve money you may work too hard to get it, envy others who have it, and even hold it a little too tightly in the presence of others’ needs. Man, I’ve been there on all accounts. I’m guilty.

I’ve also had some generous days — days where God was my priority — days where the needs of others were far more pressing than my own. In those times, I don’t remember it hurting to give. In fact, I remember that in giving, I felt like the beneficiary.

You’ve heard it is better to give than receive. Try that on for size today.

Bill Ogletree

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Pray

God, help me to be happy when I have more than enough, to see you as my first priority. Help me respond to the needs of others. Amen.

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Go

What of the wisdom from above? First, it is pure, and then peaceful, gentle, obedient, filled with mercy and good actions, fair, and genuine.

James 3:17

Leave this time sharing God’s wisdom today.

Bill Ogletree

Billy T. Ogletree is a professor at Western Carolina University. He is forever grateful for the love of his wife and two adult children and appreciates little more than living in the beautiful mountains of western North Carolina. Dr. Ogletree is the author of the 2018 book Mean Christianity: Finding Our Way Back to Christ’s Likeness available through Wipf and Stock, Amazon, Kindle, and Audible.

Rêverie, L. 68

Garry Bailey

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