You may say to yourself, “My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.” 18 But remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your ancestors, as it is today. -Deuteronomy 8:17-18 (NIV)
The world will consistently tell you that when you work hard, you earn what you work for, and it’s yours…and you deserve it. You are also told that you deserve better, and much of that is marketing to sell you material things you really don’t need by working on your self-worth.
But guess what? Your worth and value comes from His love for you! You are loved and valued and esteemed beyond measure, and beyond what anyone or anything in this earth can give you. What He gives you is also unwavering and unconditional, no matter how badly you stumble, unlike the conditional love and value and esteem afforded you by worldly things and people.
And as for all the belongings that you’ve toiled for, there are some very important points to remember:
- They are not yours. In fact, they are all on loan from the Lord, because all things are His.
- You are merely a steward for the things that pass through your hands. Are you using them to glorify Him, or to satisfy yourself?
- You can’t take any of them with you.
Many of the things that the world tries to sell us are aimed at elevating our perceived self-worth, or to boost our material status in the eyes of others. None of that means a thing in the kingdom of Heaven.
I’m not saying to sell all your things and to live in poverty and to praise the Lord in a cardboard box.
What I am saying is that, with all that you own, from the most precious to the least (in worldly terms), remember that you are taking care of them for the Lord, and that each of those things is a tool you can use to further His kingdom. And no matter how much or little you have, be thankful to Him, for He wants you to learn how to steward His resources in any quantity.
As we sometimes must learn (or relearn), it’s not about us at all. It’s all about God, and how we can serve Him with all that He has equipped us. He has reserved a place for us in His house once we leave this world, and He took away the sting of death so that we may live eternally in His presence. These assurances remind us of a love so deep that there is nothing in this world we really need, no matter what it tells us.