Post # 1
Have been rediscovering my Christian faith in recent years. I am also starting to experience some business success. In order to reach financial goals, I sometimes use visualization as a motivational technique, imagining having lots of money. I also use other positive thinking techniques that require me to be clear that my goal is to have a lot of money. Deep down, I feel a little bit of conflict because of a feeling that a Christian is supposed to focus on helping others, being a good person, etc, but not dream of and work toward being rich. Never been an issue before because I spent many years as a single mom and also on disability. Just wondering how Christians reconcile the material success with their spirituality.
Post # 2
Very interesting topic. I am commenting to follow!
Post # 3
I suspect you will get different answers depending on the sect of Christianity the answers come from. YMMV.
as a general rule though, “don’t be a dick in business” and “support the greater good” are the two mantras I would go with. So if you have a choice between an action that may harm another and one that nets you less money but is higher welfare of people or the planet, go with option 2.
you can also look into a concept called social procurement, where you tie your business goals in with social goals.
Post # 4
Ethics and tithing may need considered.
Post # 5
If youre loaded you can do a lot of good.
Post # 7
It really depends on what you’re planning on doing with it and what your motivation is. The root of all evil is not money, but rather the LOVE of money. 🙂
Post # 8
Hey! I recommend checking out Dave Ramsey’s books! They offer a lot of pretty solid financial advice as well as some Biblical perspective on handling money.
Post # 9
Not a Christian, but having a lot of money seems like a very superficial goal to me. I would rather focus on what you need the money for. Does it make you independent? Does it allow you to afford the things you like / need, to travel, to start a family? These to me would be much more motivating than a pile of money.
Post # 10
Since you asked for our perspective, I’ll give you mine. Personally, I think there’s a difference between making a lot of money and having a lot of money. So to me, a Christian following Jesus’s teachings (“It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.” – ie, it’s impossible) wouldn’t be focused on retaining wealth, but that wouldn’t preclude you from growing your business as much as you can.
This isn’t necessarily a Christian perspective, but I also totally agree that one of the most important things is to try to figure out why you want the money in the first place. Are you going after status? The ability to travel a lot? Attempting to make sure that you never have to ask anyone for help (independence)? Wanting nice things?
I think I will always remember this lesson from my ethics class in college. We read a book (The Soul of Money – I don’t agree with everything in there, but the overall premise is something I find really valuable) where the author had gone to talk to a group of women at Microsoft in the early days – obviously, they had all worked incredibly hard to make it to the top in what was (especially then) a male-only world. The vast majority of them said that their top priority was their families, but simultaneously all of them were working 80 hr+ weeks meaning they essentially spent no time with their kids or their spouses. The author was asking them “If your family is truly your priority, are you comfortable with your status quo of never seeing them?” and you know what, some of them were because to them prioritizing their families meant prioritizing their work so that their families would be well taken care of. But for others, it was a bit of a wake-up call where they realized that they needed a new balance between working to take care of their families and actually valuing their time together enough to spend more time together. It’s all about figuring out your priorities and then making sure that your actions actually line up with what you’re saying you value. Because if you don’t, then you’re never going to have enough money because there’s always the possiblity of more out there – so you’ll never really get the chance to be content with your life.
Post # 11
- Wedding: November 2014 - Nazareth Hall
It’s not against religion to be wealthy, so don’t feel bad that you are successful. Just make sure you do right with what you have. Never take short cuts or lie to gain more, be gracious in your giving and give a lot. We are also christian and I tell DH if we ever are very well off, after we and our families are taken care of, I want to be the people that randomly leave servers $1,000 tips and bless food pantries at Christmas time and such. I hope someday that I am able to do that.
Post # 12
My father always gave 10% of his paycheck to the church. He did not have and still does not have very much money, but faithfully every 2 weeks 10% of his earnings still go to the church.
If you practise this ritual of 10% to the church you can feel good about the money that you make. The more you make, the more you will be giving the church. Just be sure you choose a good church to give the money too.
Post # 13
As a Christian who struggles with materialism I do think that there are many Bible verses that caution against the focus on accumulating wealth. My approach to work is influenced by Tim Keller’s book Every Good Endeavor, which I think lays out a biblical approach to work. Personally I would focus on the good that I can do, how much of my money I can give away. For example I try to live only on necessities and no more, I try not to keep up with the joneses (myself and all my friends are 6 figure earners but for example I don’t stay in four star hotels when I travel). It’s a lifelong journey to try to remain different
Post # 14
good point. I was lucky enough to work part time when my daughter was young. The job allowed me to do some of the work at home. Even now that she is off to college, my current business venture is run largely out of my home.
Post # 15
I’m very impressed with you, not because of your material success but because of your questioning. When asked a question, Jesus often responds with another question rather than providing a clear cut answer. Questioning is essential in following Christ.
There is no easy answer here. My husband and I have struggled with similar issues a great deal. We left our last church because of the extent that wealth was valued and are struggling with the same issue in our current church. Experiencing poverty hhas drawn me much closer to God and has caused me to prefer a simple life and a smaller paycheck.
I suspect that having been a single mom on disability provided you with insights you wouldn’t otherwise have had. I also suspect that you are someone who is prayerfully capable of weighing these matters you are struggling with and discerning how to balance money with your faith.