Do you want to be made well?

Worthy Christian Devotions » Finances

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions

James 4:3 Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.

John 5:6 When Jesus saw him lie, and knew that he had been now a long time in that case, he saith unto him, Wilt thou be made whole?

Yeshua (Jesus) asked this man "Do you want to be made well?" Of course he did! Wouldn't you? Why did Jesus ask a question like this when its answer was so clearly obvious? It seems the Lord wanted to hear him verbalize his need.

In the biography of George Mueller, a strong man of God who established orphanages throughout England in the 1800's and raised the kids up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, this amazing Saint relied upon God for every single need that he faced without making any financial appeals. He laid before the Lord every aspect of these orphanages. He prayed for the locations, the buildings, the furniture to fill them, the workers to run them, and everything else he could think of. When the first orphanage was ready, Mueller realized one major thing was lacking — orphans!! He forgot to ask the Lord to provide the orphans!

Sometimes the obvious things just smack us in the face, don't they? On several occasions, I've found myself in this very position! Silly me — I forgot to ask!

The Lord is asking us today, "Do you want to be made well?" Whether it be physical healing, spiritual, emotional or financial healing, no thing is too great or too small for our Lord! Perhaps we've just forgotten to ask Him!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Finances

Let it go!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Finances

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions

Matthew 6:19-21 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

My wife has had an interesting life. Here, she shares a small portion of her past:

I was born in Israel. My parents divorced when I was a toddler and my mother met and married a hippie American tourist who was searching his roots in Israel at the time. Later, we went back to the States with him. Little did we realize that he was heavily addicted to drugs and this among other things made for a very unhappy family and little on which to live.

Every once in a while my father in Israel would send money for my mother to buy an airline ticket for me to visit him and the rest of my family. One particular year when I about eleven or twelve, he gave me a nice chunk of spending money for the duration of my trip, the equivalence of two hundred and fifty dollars or so. When my time in Israel that summer was coming to an end and I realized I had hardly touched that money, I decided keep it and not tell him or anyone else. I mean, my dad had assumed I'd spent it, right? No one would have to know, "I reasoned." I'd take it back with me and have lots of money to spend when I returned to Israel the next time.

When I got back to America, I put that stash away in a little jewelry box on my dresser. No matter how poor we were, I always secretly felt rich knowing that stash was there. The next summer, my father sent for me again. Before I left, I was sure not to forget to put my saved shekels deep in my pocket, as not to lose them. I was the richest girl in the world!

But when I reached Israel this time, my father gave me money unlike the kind I had in my pocket. It looked funny — not at all like my long-awaited spending stash. It was different in color and had a different design. "That's strange," I thought, "How could this be?"

To my great dismay, the currency had changed to the New Israeli Shekel while I was away. The money I had was absolutely worthless now. I was sick to my stomach.

What a waste! And worse, I couldn't even tell my dad.

A wise man once said, "Greed is the logical result of the belief that there is no life after death. We grab what we can while we can however we can and then hold on to it hard."

Our Father has given us some spending money, hasn't He? And sadly, it is our tendency as human beings to want to keep it to ourselves. Let's not hoard what He has freely given us. Let's freely bless people around us in need, whether it is with our finances, our possessions, our time and energy or comfort. There is a lot more where those came from. And we can't take it with us anyway — the currency is different in heaven!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Finances

Learn to Trust the Giver!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Finances

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions.

James 1:17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.

F.B. Meyer once said, “The education of our faith is incomplete [till] we learn that God’s providence works through loss…that there’s a ministry to us through the failure and fading of things. The dwindling brook where Elijah sat is a picture of our lives. ‘Some time later the brook dried up’ (1 Kings 17:7) is the history of our yesterdays and a prophecy of our tomorrows…learn the difference between trusting in the gift and trusting in the Giver. The gift may last for a season but the Giver is eternal. If the Lord had led Elijah directly to the widow at Zarephath, he’d have missed something that helped make him a better man – living by faith. Whenever our earthly resources dry up it’s so we may learn that our hope and help are in God.”

The world is engulfed in a financial crisis, and there are many that are wondering how they are going to pay their bills. When we first moved to Israel just over 10 years ago, we left the United States with just a few thousand dollars and a few suitcases. We honestly didn’t know how we were going to survive financially. But in those first few months, we saw the faithfulness of God as He provided in the most miraculous ways. And it was during that season that we learned how God truly provides for His saints. Over the years, we’ve had to take huge steps of faith which seemed impractical and illogical through earthly eyes – but we took those leaps, and God has always provided – often at the very last minute! But something the Lord taught me early on — if it’s the Lord’s will – it’s the Lord’s bill!

Even though we’re living in this "economy" — if you are a saint of God then you're in His economy — and in His economy, the resources are not limited. Let’s keep our focus on the GIVER, instead of the gifts!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Finances

Are you trapped?

Worthy Christian Devotions » Finances

Philippians 4:11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.

Charles Swindoll wrote about these men who bring in animals from Africa for American zoos. They say that one of the hardest animals to catch there is the ringtailed monkey. For the Zulus of that continent, however, it's simple. They've been catching this agile little animal with ease for years.

The method the Zulus use is based on knowledge of the animal. Their trap is nothing more than a melon growing on a vine. The seeds of this melon are a favorite of the monkey. Knowing this, the Zulus simply cut a hole in the melon, just large enough for the monkey to insert his hand to reach the seeds inside. The monkey will stick his hand in, grab as many seeds as he can, then start to withdraw it. This he cannot do. His fist is now larger than the hole. The monkey will pull and tug, screech and fight the melon for hours. But he can't get free of the trap unless he gives up the seeds, which he refuses to do. Meanwhile, the Zulus sneak up and nab him.

There's a pretty clear moral to this story, wouldn't you say? If we really want to be free, we must let go of the things we love. The more we hold on to our earthly posessions, the more frustrated we will get and eventually, we will be entrapped.

Let's let go of the worldly things we've been holding on to. God has much greater things for us to be doing than sitting here with our fists in a melon!

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions.

Worthy Christian Devotions » Finances

Have you given your all?

Worthy Christian Devotions » Finances

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions

Psalms 54:6 I will freely sacrifice unto thee: I will praise thy name, O LORD; for it is good.

During his reign, King Frederick William III of Prussia found himself in a bind. Wars had been costly, and in trying to build the nation, he was seriously short of finances. After careful reflection, he decided to ask the women of Prussia if they would bring their jewelry of gold and silver to be melted down for their country. Each piece of jewelry he received, he would exchange for a decoration of bronze or iron as a symbol of his gratitude. These decorations would be inscribed, 'I gave gold for iron, 18l3'.

The response was overwhelming. But more importantly, the women prized these gifts from the king even more highly than their former jewelry! The reason, of course, is clear. They were proof that they had sacrificed for their king.

When we come to know our King, we, too should want to exchange the flourishes of our former life for Him. The amazing thing about our King is that He not only takes our jewels but He takes our rags too — and uses them for the good of His Kingdom!

Perhaps there are some things we need to sacrifice to him today. Let's pray and ask for His revelation. There are great things awaiting those who give.

Worthy Christian Devotions » Finances