My plan was to just post a number of reflections on the verse in 1 Timothy after meditating on it. But then I got home and started washing the car I just got repaired so I could sell it and then buy the truck I’ve been borrowing from a friend. And despair came over me because I worry how much I’ll be able to sell it for. And other financial issues came into play as the night continued.
I awoke at 3:20. Despair hung over me like a heavy blanket. And all the voices reminding me of my financial weakness kept me awake. I was reminded of how I should not talk to people about money till I really, really, really believe the things I say. And how until I get my act together, I should be quiet about what is going on in SGM.
In other words my weakness drove me to despair.
After two hours of trying to pray, another “voice” reminded of the words, “When Satan tempts me to despair…” I could not remember the rest, but it did not matter.
Really, money is all about strength and weakness. If we have it, strength. If we don’t, weakness. This is the way of American Christianity. And into the face of it the Apostle Paul looks up and tells me he is glad about his weaknesses.
I want to be.
Below are the reflections on 1 Timothy 6:8, “But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content.”
1. I could stand to lose a little weight so food is not really an issue.
2. My main problem is I worry about tomorrow as if I will not have food and clothing sometime in the future.
3. My clothes are a little tattered, except the ones that are a little too small. See above.
4. I’ve never missed a meal (also see above) or had to go without clothing (to everyone’s great joy).
5. I’d like to be able to afford a vacation this year but I have to keep reminding myself I get to enjoy a lot of things, even if that is not one of them.
6. I have all these choices for entertainment, which is more than food and clothing, and I still want more. When I was a kid I only had 4 channels and was amazed. No cable. No internet.
7. God doesn’t seem all that interested in me being able to look down the road and not have worry because of all the money we have. I think he has something else in mind.
8. Being content with food and clothing does not mean it is wrong to have more than those things. But it does seem it is wrong to doubt God’s love and care if those are taken care of.
9. Part of the difficulty is being surrounded by those who have so much more.
10. If working in a bank has taught me anything, wealthy people are not happier people. Indeed, they are less than content.
In Christ Alone by Stuart Townend/Keith Getty
Just listened. Thanks for making me cry like a schoolgirl. No really, thanks.
The one you were thinking of is “Before the Throne of God Above.”
Oh yeah! my bad.
Thank you for the reminder …much needed right now in my own financial crisis..
I have an on going illness (2 years) that has taken us from a comfortable middle class life to almost living from paycheck to paycheck. I can relate to financial struggles but God has indeed given us food and clothing and we are learning to be content with these things ( hopefully its only temporary though 🙂 )
“I should be quiet about what is going on in SGM.”- Perish the thought. Keep up the good fight Matt.
Matt, been reading for a couple month now (since your first SGM post) but this is my first comment. In the midst of a tight budget ourselves, I can’t tell you how much a post like this from you connects to me. Thanks for sharing something like this.