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.