Be rich in good deeds podcast notes

The day I found out I was rich

I met with Pastor Gaston with Haiti and he told gave me this statistic. I asked him how many people are hungry in Haiti/ Gaston said, “Based on what I see I would say 85%.”  Then he stopped himself and added this.  “85% are hungry and 50% are starving.”  That statement is still ringing in my ears.  Let me tell you this.  After that I was sure to finish my plate.  I felt a little guilty when Sterling couldn’t finish hers.

That day I spent with Gaston was one of the most amazing, memorable, hilarious days of my life.  But it changed me.  As I drove home after that day with Gaston asleep in my passenger seat, I realized that as a rich man I have a responsibility.

When did you realize that were rich?

I’m guessing that I’m not alone in this.  I have a feeling that this room is filled with rich people.  People who never have to worry about missing a meal.  People who have homes and running water and sometimes working cars.  We’re not hungry.  We don’t even know what hungry feels like.   Let alone starving.

This morning I want to talk to the rich people in the world.  My prayer is that we will get some perspective on our wealth and how we can use that wealth to change our world.

1) The first step  in being rich in good deeds is to realize the power money has over you

Godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. 8 But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. 9 People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. I Timothy 6:6-10

Money makes you happy? Daniel Pink

Ted talk

Several years back, Robert Hughes wrote an article about America called, The Culture of Complaint.  Tell me if you agree with this statement.  We live in a society where people perceive themselves to be entitled to having all their desires fulfilled.  We take this to be part of our birthright.  We accord ourselves victim status when it doesn’t happen.  We live in the culture of complaint.

Would you agree with that statement?

That’s just how we live.  Let me tell you a quick story that illustrates how we live. There is a woman in our small group that shared that she lost her job.  This woman has a reputation as a spender, at least according to her husband,  so losing her job was going to put her in a hard spot.  As she was sharing we were all listening and one of the other members of our small group asked this question, “So are you into sales.”  To which her husband responded back immediately.  “No, actually, she’s more into purchasing.”

I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. 12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do everything through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:11-13

2) Use your money to invest in people

This is different than most people’s view of being rich and my view of being rich growing up. Being rich is having enough money to buy stuff for me.  God has a different view of being rich.

Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. 18 Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. 19 In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life. I Timothy 6:17-19

With riches comes great responsibility.

Underline this line.  Be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share.  Being rich in God’s eyes is not having all the money you could spend on yourself.  Being rich is being rich enough to invest in others.  To be rich in good deeds.  To have the money to care for other people.

How have you shared your wealth with people?  How has that give you purpose?

Join the adventure.  Stop buying things for yourself and start investing in others.  Live rich.