By Alan Bailey
What’s more valuable than money?
Have you ever dreamed of receiving a lot of money all at once? Be honest.
Surely at least nine out of ten people have entertained some hope or fantasy about sudden wealth. For a few it happens. Their numbers come up in the lottery draw, they win on a TV show, or their assets or stocks rise on the markets, and they are instantly rich, or perhaps even millionaires!
Wow! What could you do with all that money?
The popular answer would be pay off all debts, or build a dream home. Next, a flash car or two. Then, overseas travel. The list could go on endlessly.
But every now and then someone asks the important question:
"Will all this bring the happiness you want?"
For some, getting rich quickly has been a disaster. There are pitfalls in having money and being known to have it. Many strangers will want it and ask for it relentlessly or take it by force. Relatives can expect a share or become offended if they don't receive any. What starts out as a blessing can soon become a curse.
Added to this, there are many people who simply cannot handle money. They spend it like water or invest it unwisely and lose it at breakneck speed. We have all heard stories of people whose marriages have broken down through arguments over money.
There are positives
There will be other scenarios. Some folk will be wise and anonymous about their abundance, keeping things in perspective. They will have the opportunity to do something worthwhile with their financial windfall. This is especially true when the needy are helped.
The statement "Money is the root of all evil" does not appear in the Bible. That book says, "The love of money is the root of many kinds of evil." This cannot be denied. We should try and lose any fascination or affection we have for money, seeing it as useful but not the essence of life.
There are many things that are better than money and what it can buy. The love of a person close to you; respect and personal dignity; the simple enjoyments of life such as appreciation of health and beauty.
Importantly, there are gifts from God, like forgiveness, peace of mind, eternal life and simply knowing Him. Knowing God and His good gifts through Jesus Christ is wonderfully satisfying to the point that hankering after the things of this material world seems tawdry.
We must ask ourselves, "What really matters? What is of real value? God gave His Son for the world, paying a supreme price so that life could be ours as a gift.
"Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift" (2 Corinthians 9, verse 15). •