New Hope Notes
Fixing Our Finances
Faith Fixer Uppers
Pastor Wayne Cordeiro, Pastor Jon Burgess
PASTOR WAYNE CORDEIRO [Video from Eugene, Oregon]:
How we use money tells a lot about who we are. In fact, the Bible speaks a lot about that. In the Old Testament many of the Israelites made money their god.
The Bible says, “For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, and forfeit his soul? For what will a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Mark 8:36-37 NASB)
What role will money play in your life? Will it be an end in itself, or a means to an end? The choice is yours. Before we talk about some principles to improve financial stewardship, let's talk "debt."
Debt in itself isn't wrong if it's budgeted and it's affordable. Debt becomes negative when we don't have enough to cover that debt. We could proceed in our way towards an indebted lifestyle, or we can resolve it and proceed in a healthier, more prosperous life — it depends on how you deal with debt. Let's look at two primary causes of debt:
THE DEBT MINDSET
The Bible says, "There is one who pretends to be rich, but has nothing; another pretends to be poor, but has great wealth." (Proverbs 13:7 NASB)
1. Entitlement. We live in a generation of entitlement where we feel that the world owes us. That mentality starts to spill over into every other area of our life, and we feel everybody owes us something.
But we don't realize that this is a two?way street. In other words, if we feel people owe us, then, we must also realize that we owe them—whether it's respect, commitment, help, or provision.
The first reason we fall into debt is when we live with a mindset of entitlement and think we must have everything right now because it looks good and we deserve it! Here's an amazing revelation—it's all about God, His kingdom, His laws, and His laws being kept and His ways being exampled so others can see Jesus in you and in me!
2. Lack Of Self-Control.
The Bible says, "Therefore if you have not been faithful in the use of unrighteous wealth, who will entrust the true riches to you?” (Luke 16: 11)
The way we manage earthly wealth or steward worldly wealth will prepare us for true riches. “True riches” is about greater spiritual depth—gaining character, discipline, and maturity. True riches might be a good family, a pure heart, a lasting legacy, godly influence, farreaching and world?impacting ministry. This is true wealth.
Don’t confuse true wealth with worldly wealth. The Bible says what profits a man if he gains worldly wealth and loses everything else?
We shouldn’t fall into the trap of using God as a means to get what we want. Don’t treat God like a genie. Be careful to not think that He exists to bless you, prosper your business, get you more sales, more money, and a bigger house.
God points us to true riches, not the fleeting and temporary ones. The choice is ours—when money is stewarded well, it will be controlled the way the King wants it controlled.
When you learn generosity, you'll realize that giving is not an expense but an income because God always gives back more than what you've given. You just can't out give God. I promise you. Tips for…
IMPROVING MY STEWARDSHIP
1. Establish Your Purpose Or Your Calling.
Know what your purpose on earth is.This will include your family, your gifts, and your passion—your ministry (life and purpose).
What do you think God created you for? Who are you to influence? What should you leave behind? God made you for a purpose, and it's not to make money first. Be diligent and faithful as if you were doing what you're doing for God. Don’t compare your assignment to that of others because comparing will distract you from your own assignment. Focus on what God is calling you to do. Develop your calling and He'll provide what you need so that your calling will be fulfilled! The Bible says, ”For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south. But God is the judge: he puts down one, and sets up another.” (Psalm 75:6-7)
PASTOR JON BURGESS: Hi, New Hope! We encourage you to become a part of our next small group series as Pastor Wayne shares more information on Fixing Our Finances. Come join one of our over 600 small groups located throughout the island. You will receive a DVD and booklet.
Pastor Wayne said the way to fix your finances is to first establish your calling and the next thing is…
2. Prioritizing Your Eulogy Over Your Resume.
In this world, we are driven by our resume—how we look to others. Yet in the Kingdom of God, how we impact others (who we are and how we live) are important—not what we do!
Prioritizing eulogy over resume means we should live for our last day today! Understanding that our resume is secondary to our eulogy matters because Christ wants us to live for that which matters most. Let me illustrate:
Pastor Wayne, from the beginning, taught us to live for our eulogy rather than our resume because what we want celebrated at the end of our days, we should to be celebrating now! Jesus taught that in order to receive, you must give. In order to gain, you must surrender everything. That doesn't make any sense!
It's all about control. Instead of controlling your world, let God control it. This is what Paul is mentoring his protégé, Timothy…
“But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. 8 But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. 9 Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.”(1 Timothy 6:6-10 KJV)
The word "love" here is “obsessive love.” (Not “agape,” the kind of love that Christ calls us to.) When we love money, it ends up owning us instead of us owning it. The love of money is the root of all kinds of evil and some eager to get rich fall into a trap and many have wandered from the faith experiencing much grief.
In prioritizing our eulogy over our resume, New Hope has invested in people and put our best into that which cannot be burnt up—our relationships.God, through New Hope, has planted churches all over the world, our children are learning about God, our Spirit of Aloha is reaching into the communities, and our young leaders are being raised up through YPAC and our University—all have eternal value!
God has given us however much time we have to invest into that which matters most. Is there anything else that matters more than the relationships in our lives, than the people that God has called us to care for and love?
3. Choose To Give While Living.
The Bible says, “Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. 18 Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. 19 In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.” (1 Timothy 6:17-19 NIV).
The poorest five percent of Americans, those that are at the bottom of the economic rung, are richer than 68 percent of the rest of the world. More than a billion people in the world live on less than a dollar a day.
Please understand when the Bible commands us (the rich) to put our priorities in the right place means to give while we're living. We're not privileged, we're not better than those who live around the world, but if we've been blessed with more, it's not to accumulate or to hold on to. It's so that we can give and show the love of God and lay our treasures in heaven where moth and rust cannot destroy, as Jesus said. Paul no doubt is quoting and thinking the same.
Here are two ways that we can do that: First is by giving our tithes. God's blessed us even if we're going through hard times.
The word "tithe" means a tenth. Tithe is the first 10 percent of our income that God commands us to give. This is how we give while we live: We recognize that God is to be put first. This is not a suggestion; it’s a command! The Bible commands, "Honor the LORD with your wealth, with the first fruits of all your crops …" (Proverbs 3:9 NIV)
By tithing your first 10 percent to God first, it's honoring Him and it helps the Church to operate. Your 10 percent funds the hundreds of ministries every single day, every single week, every single year. You are giving while you're living. I want you to know as the Campus Pastor we wouldn't be able to do anything if it weren't for your giving—your faithful tithes.
In order to tithe that first tenth, we must have a budget.
If you want to be regular in your tithing and put God first, remember that the measure of where your heart is is the measure of where your wallet is. Your wallet should be fully surrendered to God. Here's how Cyndi and I show God that He is first. Before we pay any other bills, before we buy any other thing, we have our tithe automatically drawn first so there's no way we could even be tempted to try and put anything first other than our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Malachi 3:10 talks about your tenth or your tithe going specifically to the local church. It's the first thing we do before we fill up our tank of gas. It says I'm worshiping God above all else. I'm doing my giving while I'm living, and I wouldn't be living if He hadn't given everything to me. Literally, it acknowledges that I would have nothing if it weren't for my God.
Please join us in being a part of this building initiative called Future and Hope. Let’s invest into something that's going to outlive us. That's your offerings, which is separate from your tithes. Let’s take a step of faith and give above and beyond your tithes.
The Bible says, “Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”(2 Corinthians 9:7)
Here's the amazing thing. In a year's time we have already given $2 million towards the Future and Hope building initiative. Can we give God glory for that? Thank you, Jesus, we're halfway there!
On October 28 and 29, we are inviting everybody to join in halftime of our Future and Hope building initiative. We have one more year to go and we invite you to come help us finish as a team by celebrating with us that weekend. Wear your favorite team sports jersey—football, baseball, basketball, etc. We’ll have a tailgate party and special elements going on during that weekend. It will be fun celebrating the faithfulness of our God as we're already seeing amazing things happen with what previously seemed impossible for our church! We invite everyone to offer whatever you can to help us build the rest of the Church in this Future and Faith campaign.