REAL POWER: MAXING OUT ON GOD'S LOVE
THE COST OF LIVING
As I sailed around the world on my
catamaran, I made a surprising discovery. People living in
non-affluent areas of the world are happier than people from highly
affluent societies. They are not consumed with acquisitions, and they
donít face the financial pressure of a thirty year mortgage. They
lead simple lives and have simple pleasures. Their lives continually
reminded me that the best things in life are free.
These people did not have a high cost
of living. They lived well on a meager income. My voyage through the
South Pacific showed me that much of the financial pressure in
affluent societies doesnít come from the high cost of living.
Instead, it comes from the cost of living high.
When you sail in the remote islands
of the South Pacific, you end up eating the same food the local
population eats. Your diet has a great deal of rice, fruit, and
vegetables. Itís actually a healthy diet as long as you donít fry
everything in coconut oil. You can easily spend less than a hundred
dollars a month on food if you eat the way islanders do. They donít
suffer from malnutrition, and their housing is basic and inexpensive.
I am not advocating you adopt the
lifestyle, diet, and habits of South Pacific islanders. However, I am
saying there is no positive correlation between happiness and the high
cost of living found in affluent western societies. The truth is just
the opposite. A high cost of living adds financial pressure and tends
to steal your joy. You have to work long and hard to maintain a high
standard of living.
Most people would be happier if they
adopted the philosophy that ďless is betterĒ. If they lived in a
smaller house and drove less expensive cars, their financial pressure
would be substantially reduced. If they put ten percent of their
earnings into an investment plan, they would become financially
stable. If they ate out at restaurants less often and adopted a
simple diet, they would increase their financial and physical health.
If they created a lifestyle they could afford, their happiness and joy
would substantially increase.
TO WHOM MUCH IS GIVEN, MUCH SHALL BE
In our performance-oriented society,
many people worship at the altar of financial success and personal
achievement. Achievers look at their mountain of money and piles of
stuff, and a strange transformation takes place. They start feeling
they are better than other folks. They arenít just ordinary people.
They are achievers and are proud of it. They worked hard to get where
they are, and they actually believe that they are a self-made person.
They forget about God who gave them the body and mind that made it all
possible. These individuals believe wealth and achievement are the
measure of a man.
The truth is that wealth and
achievement are the measure of the gifts God has given to a person. A
clever mind and healthy body are gifts from God. All of life is a
gift. If God has given you the ability to make money, you should
thank him for that gift, and use it to make the world a better place
and enrich the lives of other people. Money gives you the power to do
an exceptional amount of good in the world.
Andrew Carnegie was one of the
richest men in the world. He used his money to build hundreds of
libraries in towns and cities across America. Carnegie felt that he
was given his assets in order to accomplish good things in this
world. He did not want to die with a billion dollars in the bank. He
wanted to use his wealth to enrich the lives of millions of people.
Jesus said, ďTo whom much is given,
much shall be required.Ē This short sentence puts money in its proper
perspective. If God has given you the ability to make money, he also
requires you to use it to make the world a better place. If your
coffers are overflowing with blessings from God, then count your
blessings and give thanks to God for his gifts. But donít stop
there. Go the rest of the way and use that money to bless the lives
of other people.
MONEY ONLY GIVES YOU OPTIONS Ė
Money does only one thing for you.
It gives you options. The person with the most money has the most
options. The person with the least money has the fewest.
Donít become consumed with
accumulating large amounts of money. Put money in its proper
perspective. Donít sacrifice yourself or your family to make a large
pile of cash. In the process of gaining the world, you will lose your
The best things in life are free.
Love doesnít cost a dime. Children are a source of joy and love even
if you donít have a penny in your pocket. Health cannot be purchased
at any price. A long life is a gift. God gave you a heart full of
love and joy when you were born. No bargain you make with life can
replace the loss of love and joy from your heart.
God is not impressed with the size of
your bank account, and He loves you in spite of your preoccupation
Money can be a blessing or a curse.
If you live for money, it will ruin your life. You will have chosen
poorly and lost much in the choice you made. Money is a blessing when
itís the by-product of a life of integrity and high purpose. If you
become rich without losing your soul, then money will be a blessing.
THE ABILITY TO ENJOY WEALTH IS A GIFT
The book of Ecclesiastes teaches that
wealth is a gift from God, and the ability to enjoy it is an even
greater gift. If you are good at making money, give thanks to God,
and if you are not consumed by the love of money, God will also give
you the ability to enjoy it.
Never trade your integrity, love, and
joy for cash. Keep money in perspective.
I must never fall in love with money. Loving money is a pathetic
misdirection of my affections. Money is only a thing. Itís not a
person and will never love me back. It never stands by me though
thick and thin. It doesnít look for the good in me or make me into a
better person. Loving money gets me into trouble, because it turns my
values upside down. When I love money, I often stop loving people. I
start doing things to them to get their money. When I fall in love
with money, I start looking at the world though dollar-sign eyes. I
end up looking into everyoneís wallet rather than into their heart.
If I love money, I will never get enough. Wealth is a gift from God,
and the ability to enjoy it is an even bigger gift. If I am good at
making money, I will thank God for this gift. If I am not consumed by
the love of money, then I will also be given the ability to enjoy it.
I will never trade my integrity for cash. I will keep money in
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RED SEA CHRONICLES DVD
When Dr. Dave isn't working as a flying doctor for the Indian Health
Service, He is sailing around the world on his sailboat. Find
out what it's like to sail on the ocean of your dreams by watching
Captain Dave's DVD.
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