"Get rich quick” schemes are everywhere. Late night cable teaches us that we can earn millions if we just buy this or that video set. Guru wannabes claim we never have to put in more effort than lifting a finger. Is this all true? Is it probable that we can reach fame and wealth overnight? Not likely.
Americans live in a microwave culture – we want things and we want them now! But what does the Bible teach? How are we to obtain wealth? Little by little!
“Dishonest money dwindles away, but he who gathers money little by little makes it grow.” -Proverbs 13:11 NIV
Here’s how The Message reads:
“Easy come, easy go, but steady diligence pays off.”
So many people try to get ahead in life by winning the lotto, gambling in day trading, or betting at the casino. But as easily as the money can come, it goes – and fast. Instead, what if there was a surefire way to build wealth? What if there was a method that almost certainly produces riches?
I believe that formula is Patience + Hard Work. One Fruit of the Spirit is patience (Galatians 5:22). Why be in an absolute rush to obtain wealth? I’m not claiming all of us should be lackadaisical and give up on trying to produce more money. But what I am saying is that we should not be so zealous that we forget what really matters in life.
So, how do you gather money little by little?
What methods should one use to build wealth with time? Here are a few ideas:
- Skip “death by a thousand cuts.” It’s the coffee. It’s the extra bagel. It’s the chewing gum. It’s anything that you REALLY DON’T NEED! Okay, maybe you need the coffee. Understood. But you know what I mean! Sometimes it’s the little expenditures in life that can destroy us financially. Skip the non-essentials in life and save that money instead – little by little!
- Create a solid foundation – build that emergency fund! Sometimes people get too far ahead of themselves and invest money before they have a solid emergency fund. Don’t try it! Instead, work hard and build up that rainy day fund. Later, you can invest with confidence knowing that if you lose money in the market, you’ll still have your emergency fund if something goes wrong. Don’t jump ahead of yourself!
- Invest in many, not few. Spread your money out. Don’t yield to the temptation to “go all in” on any investment (see Ecclesiastes 11:2). That way, if disaster falls upon one of your investments, you’ll be spared by the other investments. Don’t get greedy! Build wealth slowly through diversification and you’ll arrive at your destination.
Remember, it’s all about Patience + Hard Work. We’ve covered the patience part, but what about hard work? I’m convinced that hard work is the means by which God allows us to discover our full potential. Hard work builds our self-confidence and can be an income-producing machine. Easy money easily goes. Hard-earned money tends to stick around.
We’ve all seen or heard of those who walk into a casino and easily win big money. In their greed, they turn right back around and waste it away. They end up with less money than they walked in with. Why does this happen so often? Quick money blinds us to the true value of money. Quick money compels us to try to get more money quickly. As we pursue even greater riches, we trip and fall.
Why gather money little by little? So it doesn’t dwindle away. Gathering slowly will build our character and ensure that our riches aren’t temporary – but lasting.
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