April 1, 2023
The Apostle Paul - “Tell those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which will soon be gone. But their trust should be in the living God, who richly gives us 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 generously to those in need, always being ready to share with others whatever God has given them. By doing this they will be storing up their treasure as a good foundation for the future so that they may take hold of real life.” (1 Timothy 6:17-19)
Many years ago, a group of America's most successful men met at the Edgewater Beach Hotel in Chicago. Among them were Charles Schwab (the president of the largest independent steel company in the United States), Samuel Insull (the president of the largest utility company in the country), Howard Hopson (the president of America's largest gas company), Richard Whitney (the president of the New York Stock Exchange). Also present were Albert Fall (a member of the President's cabinet), Jesse Livermore (a billionaire), Ivan Krueger (the head of the world's largest monopoly), and Leon Fraser (the president of the Bank for International Settlements). These men had everything. People often said they wanted for nothing. However, 25 years later, this is what had happened to these men who had everything. Charles Schwab died bankrupt. Samuel Insull died penniless and a fugitive from justice. Howard Hopson was dead. Richard Whitney was in prison. Albert Fall had been pardoned from prison so he could die at home. Jesse Livermore, Ivan Krueger, and Leon Fraser had committed suicide. These were eight of the most powerful and wealthy men in the world - they had incredible riches and power - and yet every single one of them had died.
This story reminds us that wealth or things can only bring us temporal happiness. That's why the Bible says, "He who loves money shall never have enough. How absurd to think that wealth brings true happiness." (Ecclesiastes 5:10) Here’s the truth - God doesn’t want us to be without. He wants to bless us. Some of the godliest people in Scripture were wealthy individuals. However, the Bible says, “Don’t love money; be satisfied with what you have. For God has said, ‘I will never fail you. I will never abandon you.’ So we can say with confidence, ‘The Lord is my helper, so I will have no fear.” (Hebrews 13:5) Contentment does not exist in riches. Instead, knowing you're in the center of God's will (even when you don’t have wealth) is the source of true happiness and contentment in a person's life.
FOLLOW UP ACTIVITY
In your journal or on a piece of paper, write out a prayer to the Lord, asking Him to help you experience true contentment in your life as you trust in Him. Then pray that prayer before you eat your next three meals, asking the Lord to help you be truly thankful for His blessings in your life. If you’re leading your family through this devotion time, lead each member to write out their own prayer and then set the example for them as you all pray your written prayers together before your next three meals.
PRAYER FOR TODAY
Lord, help me experience true contentment in and through You. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.