Volume 16.02 | February 2015

  • How much is enough?

    God recognizes our material needs, and His Word contains plenty of promises of supply, even in abundance.1 But Jesus also warned that a vain pursuit of wealth can be a stumbling block to a Christian life.2 Human nature also makes it difficult for us to correctly assess our needs. As Benjamin Franklin observed, “The more […]

  • My caring journey

    I have spent the past several years caring for loved ones. I helped care for friends who had serious illnesses, and I became a full-time caregiver for my mother until she passed away from terminal cancer in 2009. While caring for my mother, I received a carer pension which helped pay the bills and provided […]

  • The key of simplicity

    Our true treasures are not money and possessions. Our true treasures are the kingdom of God, His love and interaction in our lives, our salvation, God’s provision and care for us, and our coming rewards. Understanding this puts our finances and their use in the right perspective. In Psalm 24, David exclaims, “The earth belongs […]

  • Can’t buy me love

    In their 1960’s hit “Can’t Buy Me Love,” the Beatles capitalized on a simple, well-worn truth. They could just as well have sung, “Can’t buy me truth” or “happiness” or “peace of mind.” Those things weren’t for sale either, and they’re still not. While this is a simple truth, it’s not an easy one to […]

  • A working alternative

    I first met Ivan in 1995 while collecting aid in Italy for delivery to refugee camps in Croatia and Bosnia. I remember his smile and warm handshake. It was a few years before we saw him again. He called to offer us some boxes of clothing he had collected, and we went to his home, […]

  • More where that came from

    Money was scarce when I was growing up. I never lacked anything vital, but I never had so much that I could casually give something away without feeling the pinch. Once when I was 17, a homeless person asked me for some money. I had been taught that giving brought good things back to you, […]

  • Living, loving, giving

    A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.—Proverbs 11:25 NIV You have been treated generously, so live generously.—Matthew 10:8 MSG Remember, there’s no such thing as a small act of kindness. Every act creates a ripple.—Scott Adams (b. 1957) You must give some time to your fellow men. Even if it’s a little […]

  • The jug of oil and the fuel tank

    One of my favorite Bible stories has also been a guiding light to me since I first started working as a volunteer in foreign lands back in 1978. Over the years since then, it’s served as both a promise I could depend on and a nudge I couldn’t ignore. This is how the story goes: […]

  • Living the dream

    “I need money—lots of money!” My friend sighed deeply, stirring his coffee at our kitchen table. “Why?” I asked him a little surprised. My friend wasn’t poor and seemed to have all he needed to be reasonably happy. He looked at me a little confused. “I’ve got dreams, man! You know—a bigger house and a […]

  • Accessories not included!

    Advertisements generally portray more than the item on sale. An ad for a plastic inflatable pool might show a happy family having a great time splashing in the water. But if you get the pool, will you get a happy family too? When considering getting such a pool for my sons, I had to explain […]

  • Flowers of heaven

    It’s not surprising that the Bible has inspired countless artists; the text is full of vivid pictures. Take this passage, for instance: “You have planted much but harvest little. You eat but are not satisfied. You drink but are still thirsty. You put on clothes but cannot keep warm. Your wages disappear as though you […]

  • The God factor

    Nearly everyone in the world experiences financial pressure at one time or another, but some people deal with it better than others. The difference is often not so much these people’s circumstances, but to whom they turn for help. The secret to overcoming financial problems is actually the secret to overcoming any problem: Do what […]