Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Money Might Not Make Me Happy, But I Sure Would Like to Try It for a While

I watched a Matlock episode last night on the Inspiration Network that was all about easy, quick money. It actually illustrated the point of the love of money being the root of all evil. Here's a quick synopsis:

A man meets an attractive woman while he's jogging. She meets him later for dinner where she tells him she made some easy money in the stock market. She gets him to invest with the same stock broker, and he makes several thousand dollars. He wants more, so he asks if he can invest $25,000 with this broker and make some real money. Of course, the broker agrees to the transaction. When the "mark" goes to meet the broker with the money, they stumble into what looks like a murder scene. Supposedly, the "police" have already been called, sirens are heard, so they scram, but not before hiding the $25,000 from the "police". Once they leave the area, the money is taken to be shared with the rest of what you now recognize as "con" men. This pattern continues again, but the next time, one of the confidence men is murdered. Is it revenge, or one of the other con men trying to get more of the split? Only Matlock can figure it out. At one point, the confidence man is accosted by Matlock's beautiful assistant. She asked, "Why would you choose to destroy so many lives?" His answer? "I'm doing nothing but using the greed that is in their heart. They know what they are doing is wrong, but they want to any way." Yikes, an admitted criminal understood greed that lurks in most of our hearts, more than we're willing to admit.

That brings me back to what the Bible warned us about, "The love of money is the root of all evil." Even TV shows recognize this to be a universal truth. I think before the episode was over, nearly every one of the 10 commandments (except disobeying parents) was broken.

Herein lies the rub, when it comes to quick and easy riches, the reason they are so destructive has to do with discipline and wisdom. You must know and understand how to use riches without destroying yourself or others. The Bible understands human nature and warns us of this grave error we should avoid:

But those who want to be rich fall into temptation, a trap, and many foolish and harmful desires, which plunge people into ruin and destruction. (1 Timothy 6:9 HCSB)

as well as...

Wealth from get-rich-quick schemes quickly disappears (Proverbs 13:11a NLT)

You see, God honors three things when it comes to our money:

1) Hard, steady work

2) Self-control with the money we earn.

3) Long term, steady growth

The second part of Proverbs 13:11 encourages us to that kind of lifestyle:

wealth from hard work grows over time (Proverbs 13:11b NLT)

Here's a good way to get rich. It's not fast, but it is tried and true. Save $5 a day. If you will do that and invest it at *12% over time, your finances would look something like this:

In 5 years, you would have $12,250

10 years = $34,505

20 years = $148,388

30 years = $524,244

40 years = $1,764,716 25 to 65

50 years = $5,858,750 20 to 70

That's how money works for you 24/7, 365 days a year with compound interest.

"But, come on, really? No one really does that," you say. Truth be told, you're probably more right than wrong on that issue in today's world. But lots of people used to do that. My father-in-law being one of them. He worked hard for many years, retired at an early age, and still lives off of his retirement. He is able to help others, bless his family, give to his church, and even support other ministries. He understood then and experiences now the way that long term investment can work over the long haul. God blessed PawPaw's discipline and patience as he let his money work for him so he could live comfortably and have the ability to invest in other lives long after retirement.

Here's a challenge to each of us...don't seek to get rich quick. Seek to invest wisely over years, and watch what can happen as we wisely do what the Bible tells us to do. You'll be amazed, and then YOU WILL get to find out what it's like to have money.

Pastor Trey Rhodes

*Dave Ramsey gives these percentages in long term investments. Here's an explanation from his website with a way to requeast more information from actual ELP's (Endorsed Local Providers)


Coming Up at Oceanside Church...

Super Bowl Party - THIS Sunday Night, February 3rd. Begins at 6 p.m. at Oceanside. Bring your best tailgate food. Wear your team's colors. Enjoy the food. Let's have some together!

Valentine's Not Just for Couples Banquet - Sunday night, February 10th 7p.m. Games, Dinner, Even pictures for $5.

RVGC Video Game competition - 6 p.m. Friday Night February 22. $5 for Super Smash Brothers Competition. $75 grand prize. Total purse to be awarded, $150.


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

A Snowball's Chance

Snow is one of those things that we see from a distance here in the south. Yes, we do get snow in Charleston, but it is such a rare occurrence that I can think of every time it snowed here in my mind. We have hurricanes about as often. So, not an ongoing yearly happening for us. It seems that the I-95 corridor is a huge deterrent for any snow that might try and make its way to the Lowcountry. The weatherman seems to almost always say, "Snow will make it to I-95, but not much farther." It seems the snow is as scared of those crazy New York drivers as I am. So, down south, we really don't know much about snow.

But I do have some experience with snow. I haved lived in Greer, SC, Rocky Mount, NC, and Lynchburg, VA. I learned to drive in the snow. Work in the snow. Go to school in the snow. Play in the snow. One thing I learn is that snow is sticky. If you roll a small ball of snow, it will pick up more and more as long as you roll it. I learned this incredible skill when trying to make a snow man with the kids. We started with a small amount of snow not much more than what we could hold in our hand then rolled it around the yard until it got to the size of a large beach ball. It made a GREAT base for a large snowman.

From small beginnings, large things can come to pass. It is no different with our debt. Most of us have made enough money in the past to do what Dave Ramsey calls, "outspending our stupidity." In other words, we had enough income to pay for our impulse buys, our restaurant splurges, our exotic vacations, our brand new cars, and our oversized homes and were still able to stay close to the black. Now, many of us have no way to cover those costs anymore. So, we wound up in debt. That's where the debt snowball comes in.

Here's how we can do it:


2. Begin to pay minimums on every debt you have.

3. Quit eating out, buying that daily cup of coffee, or find an alternate income stream like pizza delivery or another part time job that can get you $100 to $200 extra income a month. Please don't spend money to make money at this point. You can't spend your way out of debt. You might just need to quit your impulse buying to get the extra to apply to your snowball. Do what ever you can to get that extra money on a monthly basis.

4. List your debts, smallest to largest. similar to the photo above. You can get an online version at www.JoeSangl.com/tools.

5. Lastly, start with the smallest debt (not the one with the largest interest), use the $200 extra, and pay it off first. As many months as it takes to do that pay until it's finished. Now, you're on your way. Then you're ready to go on to the next debt, apply the minimum payment, add that to the same $200 plus the minimum payment you were paying on the first debt. Pay it off, then do the same thing with the third smallest adding it all to the next debt until it's paid off. The payment gets larger every time.

Here's how it works. Let's say you have a combined debt, excluding your home mortgage, of $41,000. This would include cars, school loans, credit cards, what you owe family, and anything else you owe other than your living expenses. using this method of paying debt, it will take 65 months to pay them off. And that's by only using $200 extra a month! Now, the alternative is paying for 30 years, and paying 10 times what you owe. Not a pretty picture.

My challenge to you is to beat this thing. Refuse to take anymore beatings from the bullies of the finance world. You are going to have to discipline yourself to live like no one else, so you can live like no one else in 4 to 5 years. Letting money serve you rather than serving money. When that happens, we can use our money to serve God.

Can you imagine the impact you can make for your family with the extra money? Can you imagine investing and saving with the extra and retiring without anxiety? Can you imagine impacting our world by building wells, feeding the hungry, and adopting orphans? Can you imagine the resources you can purchase? missionaries you can support? Lives that can be changed with the money that will be available to now serve the Lord as money serves you?

This is the kind of snowball that does have a chance. You can do it!

Join us this week at Oceanside Church for the "Strapped" sermon series at 10:30 a.m. See you there!

Pastor Trey Rhodes

If you need a video explanation that will explain it better, here's Craig Groeshel with one of the best explanations I have ever heard.

Coming Up at Oceanside Church

Super Bowl Party - Sunday Night, Feburary 3rd. Begins at 6 p.m. at Oceanside. Bring your best tailgate food. Wear your team's colors. Enjoy the food. Let's have some together!

Valentine's Not Just for Couples Banquet - Sunday night, February 10th 7p.m. Games, Dinner, Even pictures for $5.

RVGC Video Game competition - 6 p.m. Friday Night February 22. $5 for Super Smash Brothers Competition. $75 grand prize. Total purse to be awarded, $150.


Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Read Devotionally with Your Very Own S.P.A.C.E. P.E.T.S.

I'm sure at this point you have no idea what I'm talking about. In order to stop the confusion, i will go ahead and explain S.P.A.C.E. P.E.T.S. to you.

As we are reading devotionally and daily, we all have a tendency to do 1 of 3 things:

1) Take note of verses we have heard before and mark them for later use...just in case.

2) Mark cool verses that give us information that we think will make us sound like a Bible scholar later...just in case.

3) Underline verses that can be used with people who need this correction for later...just in case.

While the first two can be helpful, the last is a very wrong way to read the Bible. Regardless, we often allow our daily devotions to devolve into these kinds of discoveries. I want something that allows The Lord of the universe to speak with me on a daily basis. I want to know, how can this book change my life?

First, if you have any needs, prayer requests, or querstions for The Lord, simply write them down before you start on a little pad before you begin reading. You will be amazed as to how much you missed before as God was always speaking to you, but you weren't paying attention. That's called wisdom search and it helps us develop the mind of God do His will.

Second, use these S.P.A.C.E. P.E.T.S. questions to help focus on what God can say to you every single day:

Ask yourself as you read, "Is there a ..."

S. Sin to confess? -Black reminds me of the darkness of my heart.

P. Promise to claim? -Yellow reminds me that God's promises are golden.

A. Attitude to change? -Red tells me to stop my bad attitude.

C. Command to obey? - Grey reminds me of the original stone carved 10 commandments.

E. Example to follow? -Green means go and do it this way.

P. Prayer to Pray? -Purple is the royal color. Prayer is asking the King.

E. Error to avoid? - Mixture of red and white, pure with wrong makes pink.

T. Truth to believe? - True blue belief in God's truth.

S. Something to THANK GOD for or WORSHIP GOD as? -Orange reminds me of the jewels that walls of God's city, sapphire and topaz focusing me on God.

These simple questions kept in your Bible will help you focus on God's heart and mind. They can help keep you pure spiritually, morally, and theologically. And, you can...

PICK UP a S.P.A.C.E. P.E.T.S. card at Oceanside Church this Sunday

As a further step, I have also added highlighters to my toolbox. Make sure you get the non-bleeding (dry markers can be purchased here for as little as $3.99 plus s/h) kind that don't go through the thin pages of your Bible. Although, you wont be able to get the variety of colors I jave listed here. You can also use the feature nearly every Bible app or program has built in to it. I have listed the colors and my reasons to help you remember as you read. Of course, you can use any color you want and whatever works best for you.

Remember, the Bible was given to us not just to give us information, but to change our lives. (D. L. Moody)

Pastor Trey Rhodes

Here's a 90 Days thru the New Testament reading plan:


P.S. If you want, you can also choose a color that you use to remind you later to do further study or that is of personal interest/ interesting to you. I chose brown (my wife's maiden name, who is of great interest to me). That way I can goo back in a glance and find what I thought was interesting and needed that extra study.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013


I'm just gonna' go ahead and say it, money is evil. Jesus said it. I believe it. that's all I need to say. My blog is finished. I hope you got a lot out of that thought and live it out in your daily life. You see, we are bound by an evil society that uses this evil medium to make anything and everything happen. So, we are roped into using an evil thing, money, to do anything we try to do. So, we can't win, can we? To even do something good, we have to use something evil.

Only Jesus never said that. And that would be true if that's what Jesus said. The closest He ever came was when He said that we are to use "unrighteous mammon" to accomplish His purposes by doing 2 things: making friends and being faithful with it. However, the apostle Paul does tell us in 1 Timothy 6 that "money is the root of all evil" (1 Timothy 6:10, HCSB). Again, that's probably one of the most mis-quoted verses in the Bible. It really doesn't say that at all. Here's what the Bible says to us in context:

For the love of money is the root of all evil (italics mine): which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. (1 Timothy 6:10 KJV)

So, what we learn very quickly is that money is not the problem; it is me and my wicked heart. I know. I know. I can hear you saying what I have said many times before, "I don't want to do evil things with it. I just want a little more." Have you ever said that? I know I have.

So, you and I look around and find money lovers. The ones that are the real problem. We then say, "Thank the Lord I'm not one of them" and feel good about ourselves. The people we focus on are the ones that ruin lives and take money from widows and orphans and re-possess houses and cut off electricity just before Christmas. While I'm not saying that these people are not money lovers, what I am saying is that the circle is a bit larger.

Solomon, the wisest and arguably, one of the wealthiest men that ever lived identifies with laser sites what "money love" looks like. And, to tell you the truth, it makes me pretty uncomfortable. Here's his thoughts:

The one who loves money is never satisfied with money, and whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with income. (Ecclesiastes 5:10 HCSB)

While you can determine exactly what that means to you, I can say with relative confidence that there are too many believers who fall into the trap of spending whatever they make. When they get that raise that they thought would answer all their financial problems, it doesn't. They simply have come up with "new" ways to spend all that "new" money.

If that is you (or me), that is an indicator that we love money. That means that if our new additional income, which at times is necessary, doesn't help us get ahead, we are "money lovers".

The antidote for "money lovers" like me is not hoarding or saving or being stingy or being ruthless; it is found in giving. When we tithe and give to God, it is our "Money Lovers Anonymous" meeting. My tithe is my confession that I will always be a "money lover" unless I am giving it away.

How about this for your next prayer? Instead of asking God for more stuff, why not say, "Lord, where do you want me to start giving?" That attitude alone can make all the difference with what and whom we love.

The answer to our greed (as a fellow "money lover"), is not found in holding back, but in giving in. Loving our God means letting money serve us as we serve Him. How do you want to use money?

Pastor Trey Rhodes

Get involved this week at OCEANSIDE CHURCH

"Strapped" series continues this week. Getting down to nuts and bolts. See you here at 10:30 a.m., Sunday Morning at Oceanside Church


Joins us in ministering to our community spiritually this Thursday at 6:30 p.m.

Valentine's Banquet coming soon. Sunday night, February 10.


Thursday, January 10, 2013

Change Your Life in 90 Days

Is anyone tired of hearing about the newest weight loss system? How about the latest fitness craze. Truth is, most care immensely more about what they look like, rather than who they are. I have fallen into that trap and will do it again.

When I was a young boy playing peewee football for the Isle of Palms Rec department, we all went to the yearly awards banquet. I had never been to one of these before and I wanted to look just right. So, I took a bath, washed and brushed my hair (and yes, I did used to have hair!), and got dressed in some casual clothes. As we were leaving, I started doubting my choice of wardrobe. Suppose this was a more formal affair? Suppose everyone else was dressed up and I wasn't? So, I tried to call my friends and teammates to find out what they were wearing. By the time I was making the phone calls, everyone had obviously already left. All I could think about was what I would look like that night. I was one anxious little fellow. So, my mom dressed me appropriately and off we went. When we arrived, i pretty much looked like everyone else. But, truthfully, no one really cared. This was a football banquet and it was all about going with your parents to get some awards and eating some dinner. it didn't matter what we looked like, as long as we were clean and neatly dressed.

Here's the lesson: as long as you look presentable and clean, what we look like is not nearly as important as we make it out to be. But there is something that is much more important: our character. Who are we deep inside?

For the most part, once we mature, we are who we are. But there is one way to change our lives: by the supernatural power of the Spirit of God. He works in many ways in our lives, but none more than the way He works through the Bible. The Bible was given us not to have some cake on special occasions, but to be bread for daily use. It is intended to change our lives.

Colossians 3:10 tells us that "you are living a brand new kind of life that is continually learning more and more of what is right and trying constantly to be more like Christ." The more we learn about Christ, yield to Him and His will, the more we change into His likeness.

Hope you'll join us for these next 90 days as we read through the New Testament. There have already been many reports as to how the Lord has spoken in a clear and direct way in these last few days as people have opened their hearts and minds to God. It's truly an awesome thing to be a part of.


Let's see what God can do in our lives as we make the Word of God a daily part of our lives. I'm sure He's ready to change us beginning today.

Learn about S.P.A.C.E. P.E.T.S. for Devotional Reading HERE

Pastor Trey Rhodes

Coming this week...

Let's get smart with our money and learn practical and biblical principles to free ourselves. Sermon series begins this Sunday, January 13, 2012 at 10:30 a.m.

Small groups start back this week. Be sure to get to yours this week!

Calling our community this Thursday, January 17th at 6:30 p.m. What a great opportunity to minister and serve our neighbors spiritually.