John Ed Mathison headshot

John Ed Mathison

Are you looking for happiness? Traditionally people have thought that more money would bring happiness. The Bible has always negated that viewpoint, but now recent research has continued to confirm what the Bible teaches.

Heather Long in the Washington Post stated how good the US economy looks. GDP is on the rise, jobs are plentiful, and inflation is stable. The markets are up. Sounds like a really good economic situation.

But studies show that Americans today are far more glum than they were during the Great Recession, according to the Gallup-Sharecare Well-being Index. It says, “In a surprise to the researchers, 2017 turned out to be the worst year for well-being since 2008. Twenty-one states had statistically significant declines in well-being compared with 2016.”

Money can be dangerous in many ways! When cash money is seized in drug raids, agents have to wear latex gloves while handling it because of the spread of the super-potent opioid fentanyl and other designer drugs. It has to be decontaminated before it can be counted. The Drug Enforcement Agency warns that touching tainted currency “may be extremely harmful to human health.”

Money is neither good nor bad – it depends on how it’s used. If we use our money for the wrong reasons, it becomes “tainted,” and touching tainted money can be hazardous. We need to ask God to decontaminate the money we receive, so that it will not be harmful but helpful to our health and happiness.

It’s so important to use our money wisely. Someone has observed that too many people buy things they don’t need – with money they don’t have – to go places they don’t like – to impress people they don’t know. Money can be a stumbling block or a stepping stone, a friend or a foe, depending on how it is used.

Money talks – but its language we may not understand. Paul gives Timothy a money game plan in language we can understand, “Do you want to be truly rich? You already are if you are happy and good. We didn’t bring any money with us when we came into the world, and we can’t carry away a single penny when we die. So we should be more satisfied without money if we have enough food and clothing. But people who long to be rich soon begin to do all kinds of wrong things to get money and things that hurt them and make them evil minded and finally send them to hell itself. For the love of money is the first step toward all kinds of evil.” (1 Timothy 6:6-10 TLB)

“Tell those who are rich not to be proud and not to trust in their money which will soon be gone, but their pride and trust should be in the living God who always is rich and gives all we need for our enjoyment. Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works and should give happily to those in need. Always be ready to share with others whatever God has given to them. By doing this they shall be storing up real treasures for themselves in heaven and it’s the only safe investment for eternity.” (1 Timothy 6:17 TLB)

A scoreboard displays the score and indicates who’s wining and who’s losing. How we use God’s money is the best scoreboard about whether we are winning or losing. Jesus said, “Where a man puts his money, that’s where his heart really is.” (Matthew 6:21)

What’s your score?

Contributing Writer