★ Thought for the Day – Where Does Money Come From? ★

67 - Daily Dependence - Where Does Money Come FromWe have all heard the question, whether in real life or see it in a movie, “Mommy/Daddy where do babies come from?”  Then comes an awkward silence and some stalling until either “the talk” is done or in other instances some other reason is told to avoid the conversation until they are older.  Today I want to explore “Where Does Money Come From?”  I saw this comic and it got my creative juices flowing!

67 - Dilbert - Where Does Money Come From

The age old question, if it takes money to make money then how do you get ahead?  But I think that this Dilbert comic nails it!  God is the answer and if we can grasp it, it will forever change our path in our career and financial peace!

Deuteronomy 8:18 (NASB) puts it all into perspective:

“But you shall remember the LORD your God, for it is He who is giving you power to make wealth…” 

Arguments abound over pride and self-reliance that what success has been achieved is a result of hard work and effort but I love how Deuteronomy cuts to the heart of the matter and sets things straight!  You would not be able to work hard, nor would you have the intelligence or ability if God did not first give it to you.  So you want to have success in your finances then you need to put God first!  Proverbs 3:9–10 (NIV1984) instructs us to,

 “Honor the LORD with your wealth, with the first fruits of all your crops; then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and your vats will brim over with new wine.” 

Don’t get hung up with the agricultural references of crops barns and vats…substitute those for paycheck and bank account.  One thing that I have noticed is that if I do not make my tithes (or 10% of my income) and offerings (above the tithe) a priority in my budget, there will always be something else that will eat up the money.  When it says “First Fruits” here, it means above all things, first and foremost, Honor the Lord with your wealth which He has provided for you.  So the principle is to bring to God the first 10% of what you earn before you pay all the other bills.

I saw a church sign with this message, “Give God what’s right not what’s left.”  

67 - Daily Dependence - Deuteronomy 8-18

I love that and when you overlay the truth of Deuteronomy 8:18, things come into focus a little better, don’t they?  God deserves our best, and to make Him, and the building of His kingdom first in our lives.  If we don’t make our tithe first on the budget that is exactly what will happen, God will get the leftovers, assuming of course there is anything.  Robert Morris said perfectly:
67 - Daily Dependence - Robert Morris
If you do place God first, His blessings will overflow and you will see a radical change in your finances!!

Now before this post gets derailed, I am not talking about “prosperity gospel” where you “give to get,” that is the farthest thing from the truth!!  God is not a vending machine!

67 - Daily Dependence - God is Not A Vending MachineIn His book, “God Is Not A Vending Machine,” Marvin Hinten makes this statement,

“The Pervasive influence of the vending economy has had spiritual repercussions.  While still referring to God as a person, Christians increasingly tend to treat Him as a vending machine.  If they pop in their coins of prayer, Bible study, and church attendance, […I don’t think Mr. Hinten would mind, I would add ‘paying your tithes’ as well,] He is expected to deliver “the goods;” Financial security, popularity and good health.”

If you pay your tithes, it should be because you love Him and want to please God in obeying this requirement. Something to realize is that God does not need our money, but He wants our hearts to be focused on the Kingdom of Heaven, not on stuff here on earth.  He knew that we would have an issue in this area which is why God made the requirement in the first place so that MONEY would not have a hold on OUR HEARTS.  The tithe or 10% of our income is actually the minimum required by God.  It’s comical to think that we own any of our income when you shine the light of Psalm 24:1 (NIV1984) on the issue,

“The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.” 

Rather than gripping about “losing” 10% we should be happy that we get to keep 90%!  Malachi 3:10-12 (NIV1984) says it all,

“Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the LORD Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.  I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not cast their fruit,” says the LORD Almighty.  “Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” says the LORD Almighty.” 

I love this verse because it is the only place in the Bible that God challenges us to “Test” Him.  And if we pass the test he promises to throw open the floodgates of heaven (or other translations say the “windows of heaven”) and bless us so much that we will not have room enough to store it.  Now that is what I want.  He also promises to prevent pests or the enemy from devouring what we have and that is not just finances and possessions but our marriage, our children and our health.  So you see we really can’t afford not to give our tithe to the Lord.  I could do an entire post just on these three verses alone, so we are not going to go much deeper in terms of offerings or extravagant giving but just know, the closer you get to God, and the more you love God, the more you will want to give to the building of His kingdom!

I will close with this last quote from Robert Morris,

“Every time you get paid, are you going to believe that God’s Word works, that 90 percent with God’s blessing goes further than 100 percent without? We live in a cursed world, and what God wants to do is redeem our finances out from under the curse, but it takes our cooperation—to give Him the first 10 percent.”

So if you want to see a change in your finances, first change your heart and give your tithe with true appreciation of everything that God has given you.  Believe that 90% with God’s Blessing is far greater that 100% without!


If you are interested in learning more about managing your finances God’s way, check out this post called ★ Thought for the Day – Keeping Up With The Joneses? ★.

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★ Thought for the Day – What’s Your Bottom Line? ★

48 - Daily Dependence - Dilbert - LeadershipI love this Dilbert comic on Leadership because it so poignantly portrays how good intentions tend to slip between the cracks as busyness increases.  Working in a corporate environment myself, I have found this to be true of myself more times then I would like to admit, and have also had it happen to me from time to time.  It is the desire of any person to have strong leadership and to genuinely feel like their manager or boss cares about their well being.  Too often, if we are not careful, the bottom line can crush the very people who are the company’s greatest asset!  William Arthur Ward stated it perfectly when he said:

"Wise are those who learn that the bottom line doesn't always have to be their top priority."
“Wise are those who learn that the bottom line doesn’t always have to be their top priority.”

All of us have to decide what will be most important in our lives.  Whatever you value, will have the highest priority in your company, organization and personal life.  Here is a great illustration of the difference between being a “boss” and being a “leader!”

48 - Daily Dependence - Leader vs BossWe have all had a boss like this, that believes “cracking the whip” on the “subordinates” is the only way to accomplish the goal.  But a true leader gets in front, and helps “shoulder the load” with the rest of the team!  If the latter could be the rule, instead of the exception, employees would stop feeling like they are in bondage, and instead feel valued, empowered and ready to work their heart out…Which ultimately will increase the bottom line!

So the question is, how does a company achieve success which keeps everyone employed, while also bringing fulfillment and satisfaction to those who are performing the work?  John Maxwell has what I think is probably the best way to develop the people who you lead called the “The 101 Principle”…

The 101 Principle – Finding the 1 percent you can affirm, and give 100 percent of your attention. Leadership rule #1 is this: Affirmation comes before confrontation. Good leaders look for the good in people and affirm it. Only then do they address the problems. (From the “John Maxwell Leadership Bible”)

So the question is…when power comes your way, what approach will we take?  Will you be a “boss,” and drive those under you to perform or will you be a “leader,” treating people with respect and making them feel as part of a team?  Ultimately, you will either devalue or add valueThat’s the bottom line!  

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★ Thought for the Day – Got Values? ★

21 - Daily Dependence - Dilbert - Values

 

Values are an integral part of “who you are.”  I love this Dilbert comic strip because it is clear that the management have none, and that their whole reasoning behind establishing company values is not really to empower the employees, but to eliminate raise requests.

Do you know who you are and what you stand for?  You can’t wait for management to tell you what your values should be, you need to decide that for yourself.  It is vital to know who you are and what you stand for before you are in a compromising situation, otherwise when the pressure comes, whether from a boss or a colleague, you will fail the test…Proverbs 10:9 says it perfectly…

“Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but whoever takes crooked paths will be found out.”

You have heard the expression “You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.”  It is really true, eventually a lack of integrity will catch up to you and your true character will be found out.  So I ask you…Got values?

 

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