Me: I am talking to You about a strategy for my business and You are bringing up giving and debt? What gives? What does that have to do with what I am asking You about?
Me: Lord, can you share with me just one strategy to create some passive income?
God: Do you realize the money I have entrusted to you, that I have allowed you to earn by working is not yours? You are the steward. I am the Owner.
Me: Ummmmm…Lord what does that have to do with what I asked You about? You gave me these businesses. I didn’t ask for them. Aren’t You going to help me with them?
Have you ever had a conversation like that with the Lord?
Where you are talking to Him (praying about something) and He begins addressing something completely unrelated (or so you think?)
Isn’t it quite frustrating?!
This is where I found myself a few short weeks ago.
Clearly I had missed my own message about the little things as it related to money.
I was about to get a hardcore lesson in what the real connection was between what I was asking the Lord about and His response to me.
Last week I shared about the different labels this world often places on you and how many times, as a follower of Christ, it doesn’t always match up with lifestyle.
One of the biggest labels that I saw people wearing was slave.
I mean it had become so commonplace and normal that no one thought twice about it. It was almost unheard of and frankly, you may be looked down upon or made fun of if you would dare to take off that label and choose a different lifestyle.
What was even more surprising was that many didn’t even know they were wearing that label.
It no longer had anything to do with whether you were black, white, Jewish, Muslim, male, female, Asian, Middle Eastern or Hispanic.
You could be young or old, have a college degree or have just barely made it out of middle school.
For believers, it carried even more weight, especially since Jesus had come to set us free from bondage. We were called to be free in all areas of our life and instructed to make sure to stay free (Galatians 5:1).
This was clearly not the case for me, as the Lord quickly revealed, when I began talking to Him about strategies a few weeks ago.
I was driving on the highway, on my way to Bible study, when He and I had the dialogue exchange above.
And then it clicked.
Jesus had set me free, but…I was a still a slave.
I was a slave to Christ, but I was also a slave to debt.
I have been thinking about all that has been happening around the U.S. and the world these last several months.
Earthquakes, major catastrophic hurricanes , fires, horrific shootings, mudslides, terrorist attacks, etc. And these were just some of the ones that made it to local or national news.
I had heard several stories about those who were personally affected by recent hurricanes and the lack of help, resources and funds available to assist them. While many were blessed, others still went without.
Truthfully, it made me feel terrible that there wasn’t much more I could do.
There was certainly a shift taking place, not only in the earth, but also in the spiritual realm. I hope the body of Christ was listening.
God had something to say.
He desired to position His people, the children of God, to be in the place where we were the lenders and not the borrowers (Deuteronomy 28:12). The world was in crisis and the only ones who have the answer are the people of God.
Nations, i.e. the world around us, were supposed to go to the church, the body of Christ, when in trouble, not FEMA and not the government. There truly is no greater time to be the body of Christ than right now, in the midst of tragedy after tragedy that somehow has become the norm and an everyday occurrence.
The only problem was that we could only respond to the needs of the people, both physical and spiritual, if we had no debt, meaning you owe no one anything, but to love them (Romans 13:8).
If we weren’t slaves ourselves, and thus out of position.
In that conversation with the Lord that evening, He began to share these truths with me.
It wasn’t enough for me to just give my 10%-the tithe-to the local church, if I wasn’t stewarding the other 90% well. He reminded me that the money I have been blessed to receive from my job and my business is not mine to do what I want with it. After all, it is He that gave me the ability and the physical and mental strength to earn an income.
He had simply entrusted it to me with the intent that I would steward it well, to be in position to help in crises such as the ones that were occurring all around me.
All that weekend, my spirit was heavy as I continued wrestling with Him about this label that I had been wearing, (not too proudly), but nonetheless I was wearing it.
Lo and behold that very Sunday, my pastor confirmed exactly what God had been speaking to me. I knew it was Him because it wasn’t a part of the message at all, but something she sort of slipped in toward the very end of the service. She explained that it was something she had been wrestling with in her spirit for weeks and needed to say at that moment.
“Get out of debt and get out fast.”
Then I began thinking about something else: if more than half of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck (a recent report stated it was up to 78%!), this means there is something wrong in our system and how we have handled money thus far.
As God continued talking with me about this and I began doing my own research, I was less concerned about wanting to know what my next best business strategy would be. In fact, my whole mindset shifted because I knew this was what was on the Lord’s heart and therefore, it was important to me.
I decided I no longer want to be a part of that system. I no longer wanted to claim or wear that label of slave, a label that had nothing to do with the color of my skin.
I had acquired this one all on my own based on my choices.
I would rather be weird (as Dave Ramsey often says) than normal.
The normal label, these days, meant broke and in bondage to some form of debt.
For years, almost 7 to be exact, people (family and friends) thought I was crazy when I said I didn’t have any credit cards. Why? Truthfully speaking, it was a bit hard to believe, especially in the country we live in.
Yet, it was a clear example of what I had recently read in a book, that we’ve believed a lie so long that it seems strange when you are suddenly not a part of that crowd who has it “just in case of emergencies”.
Yet, although I have had to say ‘No’ more often than not, I have never been without and was always able to more than get by without having them.
If you tell a lie often enough, loud enough, and long enough, the myth becomes accepted as a fact. Repetition, volume and longevity will twist and turn a myth, a lie, into a commonly accepted way of doing things.
I was finally ready to be in position for real.
I had new marching orders from my Father and I was willing to sacrifice a lot of Nos now for the ability to say Yes many times over later.
I am determined to get out of debt and ditch that label forever.
I will no longer be a slave.
What about you?
Are you wearing that slave label as well?
Do you consider yourself an owner or steward? How would this change your perspective regarding this label, if you saw yourself as simply a steward?
How would that change the way you handle money?
Scripture references: The Holy Bible (several translations)
Photo credit: Memes.com, lmgflip, giphy, reactiongifs.us
Please like, share and comment.
LET’S STAY CONNECTED:
© LADY IN WAITING 222. UNAUTHORIZED USE AND/OR DUPLICATION OF THIS MATERIAL WITHOUT EXPRESS AND WRITTEN PERMISSION, FROM THIS BLOG’S AUTHOR AND/OR OWNER, IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED. EXCERPTS AND LINKS MAY BE USED, PROVIDED THAT FULL AND CLEAR CREDIT IS GIVEN TO LADY IN WAITING 222, HTTP://WWW.LADYINWAITING222.COM.