There sure is a great deal of emphasis on the acquisition of money and economic gain these days. It seems to fill the hearts and minds of most folks. The recent tax adjustments made by the government, appear to have the potential to create extra income for many people.
Economic growth and financial success could be beneficial, however, we need to be very careful not to place too much trust and hope in those increases.
We have to ask; what is the reason we desire to have more and more money. Is it so we can live a more luxurious life, so we can have the biggest house, the fanciest car, or the biggest bank account?
Too often, we gauge the success of a person, based on the amount of money they can access, or on the quantity of “things” they own; neither of these is an accurate gauge of one’s worth.
He scrimped and saved to make ends meet
I knew a man who never really had a great deal of money and he always scrimped and scraped to provide for his family. He traveled the countryside to find a place he could call his own.
After several years of looking, he found a small property and decided to rent it; he did not have the money to buy.
He worked part-time jobs, even selling Fuller Brush shoe products to make ends meet. He worked day shift and night shift jobs as his family grew. His family expanded; and so did the need to provide.
In order to meet the growing need, he took what little he had saved and bought a small Farmall tractor so he could till the 2-acre patch of land in his backyard.
He planted vegetables, strawberries, and even raspberries. He and his wife would can hundreds of quarts of produce to carry them through the winter months; having a little extra to sell.
He put together a small fruit and vegetable stand out by the roadside and taught his kids how to sell the vegetables for a few extra bucks.
As the years went by, he was eventually able to purchase the home he had rented for all those years. The fruit and vegetable stand would help pay the taxes on that property.
His children did not have many of the luxuries of this world, but they had food to eat and a safe home to grow up in. They learned the value of hard work, the importance of strong family relationships, and the blessings that flowed from a home full of love.
He always wished he could have done more
Many years later, as the children grew up and began leaving the nest; the father came to one of his kids and lamented; “You know, I always wished I could have given you kids more than I did; I tried my best, but this little 3 acre plot was all I could do.”
The son looked at the father and said; “But Dad, look around, you gave us all of this.” The son pointed to the beautiful mountains surrounding the little homestead, he pointed to the scenic little river behind the house and reminded his father of the countless hours of joy the kids had exploring those mountains and swimming in the creek.
He reminded the father of the safety of this little village we called home, the love and affection that mom and dad gave all the kids.
No dad, we had far more than most, even though in the eyes of the world we were poor; that is just not true; we were rich beyond measure.
That father was a success story; did he have great wealth . . . no, but he was rich in so many ways. Money could never have bought the things that really mattered.
Money cannot purchase respect or love. It cannot purchase loyalty or the satisfaction of hard work. Money cannot purchase faith in God, nor can it buy you entrance into heaven! No, money is fleeting, and over time it disappears and all you have is an empty wallet.
Use caution when pursuing financial gain
So be careful about chasing after money and material, because you risk losing everything if you do. The Bible says:
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. 1 Timothy 6:10
It is okay to have money, and even lots of it; keeping it all in perspective is what counts. If your main aim is the acquisition of money for the sake of personal gain, then you are on a dangerous pathway.
Envy, greed, and selfishness are anxious to collaborate with you in your financial endeavors. Use extreme caution as you pursue economic gain.
The goal of the man referenced in my story was not financial gain, but rather a safe, caring, and healthy home for his family.
He was a stunning success in his efforts to provide such a dream. Oh, and did I mention this man was my father.