As Lisa and I were preparing for marriage, one skill that I wanted to focus on building was financial planning. I started back-tracking through old church pod casts on money, I spoke with mentors, started using tools to help myself get in the habit of making and following a budget. Growing up in my house, there were a number of times financial choices lead to undesirable life outcomes and putting a burden on our new family wasn’t something I wanted to do.
It may have seemed inane, but the connection between material wealth and spirituality wasn’t something I could avoid in my research. The bible was just too clear on the primary importance of managing money.
And if you have not been faithful in that which is another’s, who will give you that which is your own? No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money. (V. 12-13)
Jesus, once again, knows our hearts. He knows what it will make idols of and which things will fall by the wayside. The issue here isn’t making a Satan the master, image the master, or power. The passage here insinuates that most of the time, money will vie most prevalently for our attention. The lack of, the abundance of, the want for.
I started building my knowledge of how to spend, save, and give money to avoid future mistakes and course correct. Even today, I may admit that I spend too much time looking at our banking statements. If I worry, its usually about money. I’m caught in between wanting to be a faithful steward and letting tomorrow worry about itself. I want to be trustworthy with more by doing a good job today, but I don’t want to be so focused on riches that I forget what they’re for.
The parable in this chapter isn’t about a manager’s own account, but about borrowed money. The money I’m allowed to manage now isn’t mine, but it’s been lent to me by God as a tool to instruct me about greater riches. Yes, it’s for enjoyment but it’s also for enriching the lives of others and investing in the Kingdom.
Money comes, money goes but the Kingdom is eternal.