There is probably nothing that reveals character as quickly as how you handle money.
It is a fact of kingdom-life that God uses prosperity to cultivate our self-control as well as to help clarify our spiritual maturity. Jesus made it clear that if we cannot steward our material possessions well, God will not entrust us with His greater spiritual possessions:
He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much. Therefore if you have not been faithful in the use of unrighteous wealth, who will entrust the true riches to you?” – Luke 16:10-11
As we yield to God’s grace, our character will become progressively more Christlike in the way we handle money and determine financial priorities.
God expects us to manage our prosperity with integrity and responsibility.
Our top priorities should be to meet our obligations and provide adequately for our family and children (1 Tim. 5:8). I think this means more than just the basics of food, shelter and clothing; I think it extends to providing for a child’s education and personal advancement.
As part of His desire for legacy, God wants to prosper us so that we can leave an inheritance for our children (Prov. 13:22, Psa. 25:13).
Prosperity: Building blockS to advance God’s Kingdom
A major part of our original commission was to have authority and dominion in all the earth. Dominion implies rulership over a domain, and Jesus made it clear that we have been given the responsibility of advancing His Kingdom here on earth.
One aspect of advancing God’s Kingdom is to fulfill the Great Commission.
We know that Jesus has been given all authority in heaven and on earth, and He desires that all people should come to know Him. We have also received the call to make disciples of all the nations (Matt. 28:18-20).
It takes enormous amounts of wealth to fulfill this commission: money to support missionaries, plant churches, build church buildings, care for orphans, build Christian schools and universities, establish homes for the homeless and more.
When Christians define prosperity as “just having your needs met,” I don’t think they understand the implications of that mindset. Money can be a powerful weapon in the hands of the Christian to reach the lost.
In very practical ways, we can advance God’s Kingdom by becoming a blessing to others—perhaps by giving someone a cold beverage on a hot day, or by leaving an extravagant tip the next time you eat out.
Here are a few resources that will help you go deeper in your walk with the Lord and become a blessing everywhere you go:
- Sean Feucht’s New book in which I contributed a chapter on kingdom finances: Integrity: Character of the Kingdom
- HRock Church teaching series Prosperity God’s Way
- Robert Morris’s wonderful book on generous living, The Blessed Life