GENEROSITY SERMON HELPER #3: Proverbs 18:11 – Making Wise Decisions
Updated: Nov 18, 2020
“The rich think of their wealth as a strong defense; they imagine it to be a high wall of safety.”
Tyndale House Publishers. (2013). Holy Bible: New Living Translation (Pr 18:11).
Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers.
The artist Snoop Dogg has a line in his song “Gin And Juice” that says, “…with my mind on my money and my money on my mind.” Here’s a great question…How much is your money on your mind? CNBC News revealed in a 2015 survey by GOBankingRates that 1 in 4 Americans revealed that the thing they think about the most is money. In looking at the survey if you combine thinking about work most Americans are thinking about work or money anywhere from 40% to over 50% of the time.
The level of attachment and trust you have in your money can sneak up on you if you're not careful. This proverb is a statement, but there is a question implied within that statement. In what or in whom do the rich really trust? Is your trust in your money and/or the security of your job…or…is your trust in the Lord?
Some might discount this passage and its relevance to their life because they don’t see themselves as rich. According to the www.givingwhatwecan.org if you make $25,000/yr with 2 adults and 1 child you are in the top 14% of the richest people in the world. If you changes that number to making $10,000/yr you would still be in the top 27% of the richest people in the world. In order to get down into the 50% range you would only have to make $3,000/yr. So just to clarify…this passage applies to all of us.
The real application of this proverb is determining what drives your decision making in life. As you look back and think about the last 10 really important decisions you have made, how many decisions were based on money as the critical factor vs God? That right there can be pretty convicting. All too often the decisions we’re making in our lives are based on how it will affect our relationship with our money because our money is where our real sense of safety and security is based. And when this is the case we’re saying that we believe our money is a better “wall of safety” than our God. You and I both know that this isn’t the way we should be making decisions. Our faith and or trust must be in the Lord. Now that doesn’t mean to make really reckless money decisions, but it does mean that when we’re clear that God wants us to do something that might require us to have to walk by faith that we place our trust in Him and go with God.
Let me be clear, I’m not saying that money is bad or even being wealthy is bad. Money can be a powerful tool when you allow God to direct what you do with it. But in all decisions in our life, we have to make sure that our security in those decisions rests in the Lord and not in our money.
I submit these Sermon Helpers hoping they will inspire you and be resource from which you can develop a sermon and/or Generosity Moment. Feel free to steal anything in here from me and do not feel any obligation to give me credit. Hopefully this will add value to the work you’re doing in your local church. If you would like to talk about ideas to grow you culture of generosity please email me. Keep me in mind if you’re looking for coaching or a consultant to help you with a giving, a generosity One Fund initiative or a capital campaign. If you don’t already I would also really appreciate if you would follow me on Twitter at @cstovall16 or on my Generis Facebook page.