Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God (Philippians 4:6).
Wealth denial. Are you afflicted with this syndrome?
Let’s imagine a trillionaire gives you enough money so that you are now in the top one percent of the world’s wealthiest people.
I would take the money, and you would too. I would be thankful and sing this contributor’s praises. We all would.
Now, what would you think if I told you that it’s already happened? If you make a combined individual income of 60 thousand dollars, you are in the world’s top one percent of wage earners.
Do we praise God for His generosity?
I find it ironic when I hear a politician rail against the top one percent as evil money mongers, and yet that politician is one of the one percent, and most of those listening to the rant are also members of the one percent club.
I was a pastor for 49 years, and an oft-heard complaint was lack of finances. Even if the average Christian makes 30 thousand dollars a year, the average worldwide yearly income is only 2,800 dollars.
As Americans, we should be praising God, and yet most of us are anxious about our financial security and often complain that we don’t have enough.
This is what I call wealth denial.
The God of the universe has made most Americans the richest people in the history of the earth. And do we praise God and tell others about His goodness?
Well, mostly not.
What happens when we are in wealth denial?
- God doesn’t get the glory that He deserves.
- We aren’t generous people because of our seeming poverty.
- We miss the lifelong blessing that comes from generosity.
- We open ourselves to anxiety and even anger focusing on what we don’t have instead of God’s abundant provision.
God has given the U.S.A. church incredible wealth. I believe, so we can fund the gospel to the ends of the earth. The Bible teaches clearly that Jesus will come back after the gospel has been preached to the entire world (Matthew 24:14).
The Missionary Portal website says about 66,000 missionaries are needed to completely reach the world. It costs about 60 thousand dollars per year to send a missionary. Okay, math skills are on display below …
- 66,000 missionaries needed times 60,000 dollars equals about 4 billion dollars per year.
- Let’s say there are 50 million American Christians making 60 thousand per year (this number is conservative). That’s a 6 thousand dollar tithe (on the 60 thousand dollars) times 50 million equals 300 billion dollars.
Coming back to my original point about the trillionaire making all of us rich. Wow, God has blessed the American church! But the average annual financial giving of believers in America is only about 1100 dollars.
Math skills again …
- 50 million believers at 1,100 dollars per year equals 55 billion dollars.
Christians give 55 billion dollars – a lot – but not close to the potential tithe of 300 billion dollars.
Are we thankful to a God who has made us rich? If we consider ourselves poor and unable to give, we lose our emotional peace, and perhaps the Lord has to tarry because Americans have …