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. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. (1 Tim. 6:17-18)

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Do not be conformed to the world

So here's what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don't become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You'll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.

I'm speaking to you out of deep gratitude for all that God has given me, and especially as I have responsibilities in relation to you. Living then, as every one of you does, in pure grace, it's important that you not misinterpret yourselves as people who are bringing this goodness to God. No, God brings it all to you. The only accurate way to understand ourselves is by what God is and by what he does for us, not by what we are and what we do for him.
(Romans 12:1-3, The Message)

The world wants Christians to conform to its system of money management, but what exactly are the characteristics of the world's system?
  1. selfishness
  2. greed
  3. lack of integrity
  4. materialism
  5. debt
  6. attitude of lack and the need for more (discontent)
  7. get rich quick mindset
  8. impatience
  9. consumerism
  10. laziness
  11. living paycheck to paycheck

According to Roman's 12:1-3, what should the transformed, Biblical financial mindset look like:
  1. Placed before God as an offering (v. 1)
  2. Not fitting into the world's culture without thinking (v. 1)
  3. Focused on God (v. 2)
  4. Seeking His will (v. 2)
  5. Mature. Don't allow the culture to drag you down to its level of financial immaturity (v. 2)
  6. Grateful for what God has given to you (v. 3)
  7. Responsible (v. 3)
  8. Reliant on God - He brings all goodness to us (v. 3)
Renewing the mind is a little like refinishing furniture. It is a two-stage process. It involves taking off the old and replacing it with the new. The old is the lies you have learned to tell or were taught by those around you; it is the attitudes and ideas that have become a part of your thinking but do not reflect reality. The new is the truth. To renew your mind is to involve yourself in the process of allowing God to bring to the surface the lies you have mistakenly accepted and replace them with truth. To the degree that you do this, your behavior will be transformed. - Charles Stanley

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