When you look at your paycheck, do you think of it as your hard-earned money? It’s tempting to view money as a result of our own efforts, but this perspective encourages us to act as if all our resources belong to us instead of to God. The truth is that God is the one who enables you to profit from your labors.
Thinking we have control over our assets gives the illusion of safety, but our sense of security quickly evaporates with the loss of a job or a bout with serious illness. True security is found only in the Lord, who knows all things – not in our monetary stockpiles or marketable skills. Knowing that God is in charge of our resources, whether we have much or little, should give us peace of mind because He is our provider and protector.
Recognizing that the Lord is in control of our material wealth helps with two things: It frees us from the discontentment of greed and allows us to be generous, because we never have to fear that we won’t have enough. He promises to supply enough for our needs as well as enough to share with others (2 Corinthians 9:8-10).
Commentary from the In Touch devotional by Charles Stanley, June 4, 2021.
Jesus quoted Deuteronomy 8:3.
Have you ever faced a challenge that left you feeling inadequate and afraid? The great men and women of the Bible weren’t superhuman, so they undoubtedly experienced the same weaknesses we do. Though Joshua was a strong military leader, he probably felt inadequate to fill Moses’ shoes. After all, Moses had talked with God face to face, performed amazing miracles, and led the Israelites out of Egyptian bondage. How could Joshua ever expect to live up to that?
But remember, Moses didn’t start out as a mighty man of faith. When God first called him to deliver the children of Israel, he focused on his own inadequacy and begged the Lord to send someone else (Exodus 4:10-13). Moses must have known exactly how Joshua felt. That’s why he exhorted his successor to be strong and courageous.
However, the strength Joshua needed was not going to come from positive thinking or puffed-up self-confidence. What he needed was assurance that the Lord would go ahead of him every step of the way and give the nation the land as promised. Confidence in God-given challenges never comes from within ourselves. But when we believe the Lord and rely on His word instead of our feelings, He’ll give us the ability and courage that we need to accomplish His will.
If your life were always easy, you’d never need strength and courage – and you would miss great opportunities to get to know the Lord intimately. Only as we face one faith-stretching challenge after another and experience God’s faithfulness will we learn to depend on Him instead of ourselves.
Commentary from Charles Stanley’s In Touch devotional, December 9, 2017.