Do I trust the Lord...or my bank account?
The word TRUST jumped out at me from all over the place this morning. Do you think God was trying to tell me something? When you believe in God, and seek His wisdom, you operate on high alert most of the time looking for signs of His communication with you. That’s me most of the time, but especially in the morning right after I wake up. It’s almost like I’ve just left the spirit realm in my dreams, making me more sensitive to the messages being sent my way.
When I woke up this morning, I reached for my phone as many of us do. The following notifications were waiting for me:
So, I went straight to the Read Scripture app, and hit play on The Bible Project video that further breaks down the book of Genesis. It was the best break down I’ve ever seen, and I highly recommend that everyone watch it. You’ll have a better understanding of the book and the people in it after watching.
The Genesis event that grabbed my attention today was when Abram gave a tithe to the high priest, Melchizedek. After giving 10%, Abram seems to be saying that he wants nothing that belongs to the king of Sodom, including any share of the spoils of war. Yet he makes sure his men get paid. But none of this is discussed or decided until after God gets His portion.
This leads me to believe that most of us are in no position to truly tithe in Old Testament fashion because most of us don’t have great possessions unencumbered by debt, like Abram did. We aren’t truly in charge of our finances to the point where we can afford to walk away from money that we’ve earned, like Abram did when he refused the spoils of war.
Unfortunately, the vast majority of us are enslaved to whatever entity that pays our salaries, and to the banks that hold our enormous debt (mortgage, car payments, student loans, credit cards, etc.). What we need to do is strive for financial independence, not so we can lavishly spend, but so we can give the way God directs us to give….whether it’s the Old Testament version called tithing, or the New Testament version called cheerful giving.
Perhaps we should all make a pact with our wallets NOT to buy any pleasurable item as long as we have debt. Because as long as we have debt, we have no surplus, or "increase," from which to tithe. Nor can we be cheerful about giving when our paychecks are barely enough to meet the minimums on our debt payments.
When we take trips and buy designer fashions while we have debt, it's like when a relative who owes you money goes out and buys a new handbag or takes a vacation instead of paying you back. That seems completely out of order.
Abram was able to give to Melchizedek as God directed because he didn't have a list of creditors back at home waiting to get paid. In fact, Abram didn't even have to go to war to acquire wealth. He told the king of Sodom he didn't want anything from him because he didn't want the king taking the credit for his wealth. He wanted no man on earth to have that kind of power over him. Yet, that's exactly the situation most of us are in today.
These were the things swirling around in my spirit this morning, when my hearing was at its peak. And, it was particularly timely for me after having the toughest financial year of my life! After such a year, financial independence is my goal, and I want God to have all the credit for it. What better source is there? Look how He blessed Abram. And look at how He stayed with him through everything. That's the kind of relationship I want with God.
Man is too fickle for any of us to depend on. The economy is up and down. Companies go out of business, move outside of the country, or terminate employment at will. The cost of living is constantly increasing while the value of the dollar is constantly decreasing. Meanwhile, God and His laws never change.
He's the One I want to place my trust in!
And, there's that word again. TRUST. So, I scrolled down on the app to begin reading Psalms 4 where I once again encountered the word of the day. Verse 5 tells us to offer right sacrifices. Doing what's right is often a sacrifice. It will cost you something. It might cost you everything. But in making that sacrifice, we are showing God that we trust Him above it all.
But there's more...as they say on infomercials. I opened my little Jesus Calling devotional book by Sarah Young, and the January 4 page also tells me to trust Jesus! The book encourages readers to get in the habit of saying,"I trust You, Jesus," whenever something happens. I've heard it said that there are no coincidences with God, and this morning was a glowing illustration of that.
After spending time with this page in the devotional book, I remembered the Abide notification on my phone. So I tapped it and listened to the audio meditation it took me to, entitled "God's Protection." The words I heard blew my mind!
The voice asked, "What do you trust in today? Is it your 401k or your bank account?" Then he goes on to say, "In Isaiah 26:4, it says: Trust in the Lord always, for the Lord God is the eternal rock. Humans will fail us. They just will. Technology will fail. Your job, your bank account, all of those things that we hold onto, we think that's where our hope lies. The only thing that's going to be around forever is God." I was literally amazed!
All these jewels of wisdom came at me from different places, none having a thing to do with the other. This is how God has always communicated with me. In almost rapid fire fashion, as though I missed the whispers along the way. Clearly I have some work to do in the area of trusting in the Lord. And, I'm grateful that He loves me enough to set me straight.
In whom or what do you trust? Feel free to comment below or by visiting my Facebook page.
*Welcome to my one-year trip around the world of Scripture. You’re invited to take this journey with me, as I meditate on God’s Word day and night. Each morning, you’ll find a post on my Facebook page encouraging my new #Biblebuddies along the way. And each night, I’ll be writing my impressions right here at listen2leslie.com. I’d love it if you’d share your comments, to spark some fruitful discussion. The only passport you’ll need for this journey is the Read Scripture app which provides us with our daily itinerary. You’ll love this app because it contains videos by The Bible Project that serve as our tour guide. Traveling is so much better when you have someone to share the experience with, so please join me, will you?