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empty wallet crying jag

One thing you can bet your bottom dollar on when you start seriously following Jesus is that you’ll be broke.

Flat broke.

No savings to speak of. Not even enough for an ice-cream on a hot day.

That’s because God’s weaning you off your wants and getting you used to having only enough for your needs. Burning off the excess. Refining the gold. Getting you to focus on what matters. Having money to buy things you don’t really need takes your focus off doing God’s work.

You prayed to have only your daily bread, so don’t be surprised if it doesn’t come with a steak and fries.

Or an ice-cream.

Most of us, however, don’t go gently into that economic good night. I speak from experience when I say it’s a shock to the system when God takes the money away, even if you think you’ve prepared yourself for it psychologically.

It’s at times like these that you have to remind yourself, over and over again (in between crying fits), that Jesus had no money, either.  People would donate to him, but otherwise he was a freeloader during his ministry years. He never begged, but he graciously accepted what was offered him by way of meals and transportation and housing. Nothing wrong with that, if it’s what God wants for you. Even as a freeloader, Jesus always had enough for his needs and then some.

“Blessed are those who look after the needs of God’s freeloaders.”  I’m sure that’s in the Bible somewhere, though perhaps worded slightly differently. Remember what Jesus said about how God rewards those who give even a cup of cold water to one of his children? That would be us, God’s children. His dear little thirsty freeloaders. His dear little thirsty and hungry freeloaders.

God bless us, and God bless those who look after us!

Huge blessings come the way of those who look after God’s children, especially when they’re in their seriously-following-Jesus freeloading years. But that’s always the way – those who help get more than those who are helped. It’s a wonderful law. Unfortunately, it’s been perverted by some “wolves” to insinuate that God will reward people MATERIALLY for helping others, but that’s not God’s way.

The best rewards are always spiritual.

What keeps me going as I stare into my empty wallet (and try not to cry) is thinking about Heaven. I can have all my wants here now, on Earth, if I choose to, or I can wait and get them in Heaven, where they’ll be infinitely better and last forever.

Most people, sadly, have chosen to get their wants now. It’s tempting, that’s for sure, but it’s best to do what Jesus did, and he waited to get his wants in Heaven. So did Paul, and so did all the prophets.

In this, as in everything else, we should choose as Jesus did. As long as we’re doing God’s work, we’ll have enough for our needs while we’re here on Earth. And then, if and when we get to Heaven – PARTY TIME!

As my grandmother used to say: “The good Lord provides.”

And that’s something else you can bet your bottom dollar on.


  1. laurensheil says:

    I’ve been there! One thing that go me through was proverbs 30:7-9

    O God, I beg of you two favours before I die.
    First, help me never to tell a lie.
    Second, give me neither poverty nor riches!
    Give me just enough to satisfy my needs.
    For if I grow rich, I may deny you and say, “Who is the LORD?”
    And if I am too poor, I may steal and thus insult God’s holy name.

    There was a season in my life when I had that taped to the inside of my wallet. Keep up the fight, it gets better.


  2. Wise words. Thanks for sharing.


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