One of my favorite childhood board games was called Squatter. For Americans, it’s probably a little like Monopoly, but it’s about a sheep station. Well, or a sheep ranch. The idea is to get as many sheep and to improve your property as quickly as possible. You can see the similarity with Monopoly, the goal of the game is to make as much money as possible as soon as possible.
Can you play life that way? With the sole goal of amassing as much money as quickly as possible? I suppose you can. But most of us understand that life is more than money, that there are things in life that are of much greater value than a balance in a checking account. Might be close friends, family, might be time in helping others and other pursuits that benefit humanity. Money isn’t the only thing that has value in our lives.
So how do we keep a proper perspective with regards to money? If we recognize that we can be distracted by it and not appreciate then the other valuable things in the world around us how do we keep our mind with the proper priorities? The wisest man to ever live, Solomon, wrote this in Proverbs 30, verses 8 and 9
Do not give me poverty or riches. Give me food in the amount that is right for me. Too much, and I may feel satisfied and deny you and say, “Who is the Lord?” Too little, and I may become poor and steal and profane the name of my God.(Proverbs 30:8-9)
Solomon was seeking that right balance. Don’t give me poverty or riches, he prayed to the Lord, give me what is right for me. That’s an interesting statement “right for me.” Some of us may do well with lots of money, Solomon was certainly rich, others of us may not do well with poverty. God knows us the best and he knows what we can handle. And what is good for us. So regardless of our economic status, we should be praying, Lord, give me what is good for me. If it’s a little more money, OK, if it’s a little less money, OK, do what’s right for me.
And God has done what’s right for you. Because the greatest wealth that you need is spiritual wealth. The forgiveness of your sins and he has send Jesus to be just right for you. Jesus has taken away all of your guilt, all of your spiritual poverty, and he’s claimed it as his own. And he paid off your debt through his suffering and death, and Jesus has made you rich in good works by living a perfect life for you, so that now in God’s eyes, you just right, your sins are forgiven and you are perfect.
So don’t let pursuit of earthly wealth, don’t live pursuit of anything that you think is valuable, cut you off from the wealth that God has given you in Jesus. May his forgiveness and his perfect life fill your heart in your life with peace, amen.