Summary: The second of a four part series on family life.
It is a scenario common to the college years. It involves discouragement, pain, social issues, and the very nature of existence itself. Played out in a letter, phone call, or e-mail, the voice, whether printed, audio, or electronic, is the same: panicked and discouraged.
Both sexes are not exempt from this gripping issue. However, a legendary illustration highlights this issue and it comes from the pens of a young man and his father.
‘Dear Dad, No mon. No fun. Your son.’
‘Dear Son, Too bad. So sad. Your dad.’
There is discouragement involved in this situation due to the lack of ‘mon’ or ‘money.’ The young man is discouraged that he does not have enough money to do something other than eat and buy necessities. This involves some deep personal pain… of the social kind.
No money? No social life. No social life? No girls. No potential places to go to meet girls. Nada, zilch, zip.
Moreover, since the social life has tanked, the very existence of human nature and life is called into question, especially as it relates to the reasons for higher education in the first place.
Money is an issue that does not go away in life, no matter how young or old you are. It is always a part of our human experience. It is a part of family life.
Where is God in your family finances? His involvement helps us in this important area of life.
This is the second part of a four part series entitled, ‘God is in the Small Stuff for Families.’ Last week, we began this series with a reminder that ‘God is in the Memories of Families’ as we remembered those who had sacrificed for our nation as well as for our faith and our families as well.
The purpose of this series, as I noted last week, ‘is designed to help us see things from God’s perspective and invite Him in to the small stuff, the details, of life.’
God needs to be in our memories and we need to, at certain times, give our family memories to God and ask for His grace and help as we process them. We also need to invite God into our family finances so that we can honor God with them.
Our text for this morning contains some important imagery that I think is important for us to deal with as it relates to finances. As we reflect on the sowing image of our passage, I want to ask you to reflect seriously and prayerfully on the following questions:
1. What is our family sowing through its financial resources?
2. How is God honored in our finances?
Many people have said that when you look at a person’s checkbook, you get a very good idea of what is important to that person. Jesus made that clear when He said, “For where your treasure is there is your heart also.”
In our main text, our values are linked to the quality and quantity of what we sow which is, in turn, linked to the outcomes of our sowing. Paul plainly says it, “if you plant small, you will have a small crop. But if you plant generously you will have a generous crop.”
Now, this passage can be interpreted in some broad ways, without going way beyond the intended and original meaning. It can speak to us about how we sow our time and abilities. Both are important commodities in our day and age. However, we cannot get away from this passage speaking directly to the financial affairs of life because all of chapter 9 deals with the importance of giving and giving well.
When we give on Sunday morning, what is it that we give to?
The first response is usually, “We give to a budget that says that what we give, we be used in certain ways.”
Another response, I heard a year or so ago, is “We give to the preacher who gets the money.” Well, I get a portion but it does not all go to me. (I am grateful for the good salary.)
Let me suggest that we give on Sunday mornings as primarily, an act of worship. Repeatedly after the offering, I have acknowledged in prayer our giving as an act of worship.
As we give, we give to God and worship Him through our giving. Why? Because as we do this, we acknowledge God as the giver of our financial resources we need to live on and that our financial resources are used by God to do His good work in our lives.
We also give to a vision we have of the church. This evening we are going to gather together to give thanks to God for our church and remember the gifts that we have been given through the giving of many people’s time, abilities, and yes money over the years.