Colossians 2:6-8 (NLT)
And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness. Don’t let anyone capture you with empty philosophies and high-sounding nonsense that come from human thinking and from the spiritual powers of this world, rather than from Christ.
Thankfulness is a blessing of God for His People. Those who accept Jesus Christ AND continue to follow the Lord will receive it. Thankfulness is a byproduct of cultivated faith. It is impossible to experience contentment and full satisfaction outside of the prosperity of one’s soul. There are many philosophies about wealth in the Body of Christ today. Some fell that Christians should live on nothing barely getting by sacrificing earthly wealth for spiritual inheritance. Others believe that as Children of God that monetary prosperity is a reflection of the Blessing of the Lord and should be coveted. I believe that the Lord really doesn’t care about money, bank accounts, investments and financial wealth. Jesus Christ loves you! He died that you would not only live but live abundantly. However, our sinful nature and worldly upbringing has correlated satisfaction with money and contentment with wealth. These are some of the empty philosophies that will capture unsuspecting ignorant Christians. Money cannot make you happy. It only leaves you wanting more. It cannot satisfy your soul or there wouldn’t be a high rate of suicide in the affluent communities. Could it be that when they obtained all they thought would make them happy, they found that they had nothing at all? I am just as guilty as the rest sometimes when I forget who I belong to and His Plan for my life. It is a good plan with a future and hope. It is not reliant on the world’s economy and neither am I unless, of course, I choose to be. I have accepted Jesus Christ. I continue to follow Him today. Each day I dig down deep to know Him more and secure my life in confident hope as I work out my salvation. My faith is growing. I am thank full!
John 10:9-11 (NLT)
“Yes, I am the gate. Those who come in through me will be saved. They will come and go freely and will find good pastures. The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life. I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd sacrifices his life for the sheep.”
Jesus Christ came to provide a rich and satisfying life for His People. If you are a believer who is not experiencing satisfaction, it is not because Jesus is not doing His Part. The biggest problem in the Body of Christ is not coming to Jesus but remaining with Him. We ask the Lord to come inside our heart and live there but choose to remain in the darkness of sin. The Holy Spirit cannot prosper in such an environment. When you came to the Lord, it was not under duress. Jesus did not force you to your knees but allowed you the opportunity to be saved. It is a love covenant where force would imply molestation or rape which is a violation of such a relationship. He is the Gateway to “a rich and satisfying life” for those who come and choose to remain in Him. The Lord seeks an intimate relationship with His People. Too often people come to Jesus hoping to steal a blessing or catch a healing with no real interest of a relationship or commitment to Christ. These same individuals are perplexed when their life does not prosper and they remain discontent. The thief wants to steal, kill and destroy anything and everything that Jesus Christ deposits in our life. He does it by killing our faith with fear and doubt. The enemy destroys your destiny by luring us out of the pasture of protection allowed those who follow Jesus. We are free to follow the Spirit of the Lord because Jesus Christ satisfied the debt of our sinful nature. Freedom is found by calling on the Name of the Lord and making a commitment to walk in His Ways. Lord, teach us to turn our head from worthless things and follow you, Jesus! (Psalm 119:35-37)
Matthew 13:20-22 (NLT)
The seed on the rocky soil represents those who hear the message and immediately receive it with joy. But since they don’t have deep roots, they don’t last long. They fall away as soon as they have problems or are persecuted for believing God’s word. The seed that fell among the thorns represents those who hear God’s word, but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the worries of this life and the lure of wealth, so no fruit is produced.
Faith is a requirement of thankfulness. It takes all the details of our life binding them together in Jesus Christ allowing us to wait on the prosperity that He promised uninfluenced by what this world has to offer. Jesus is a firm foundation. Faith without roots is easily removed. We cultivate faith by trusting God. Those who are successful in this endeavor are able to prosper in every situation good or bad because their Source is secure. They will prosper when everything around them is dying. Such believers are always producing fruit. (Jeremiah 17:7-8) The godly are satisfied with the fruit they produce not wanting what everyone else has. (Proverbs 12:12) Faith always produces fruit. But it is not always in the form of a paycheck or wad of cash, everything belongs to Jesus Christ. He does not provide the way that the world indicates wealth and prosperity. But He is faithful to supply our needs! Our goal is fruit! It really is what we are after.
Galatians 5:22-25 (NLT)
“But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives.
Faith grows strong in truth. The truth is that this world is no longer our home. We are foreigners in this land and should live like it. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Not only are these the fruits that should be cultivated in our life as we live by faith. These are things that we should experience as Blessing of God is manifested in our life. What we give is what we get just like what we plant is what we harvest. Faith comes by hearing the Word of God. Our roots will only be superficial unless there is an ample amount of time learning about the Ways of God and applying them to our life. We must learn to be residents of Heaven and stop trying to fit into this world, too.
I Timothy 6:6-10 (NLT)
Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth. After all, we brought nothing with us when we came into the world, and we can’t take anything with us when we leave it. So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content. But people who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.
Godliness produces thankful content people. I began my life living with my parents and grandparents. When we moved to our own home, it was a single-wide mobile home in a trailer park. As I grew up, I wanted a real house. Now I have one. We live on a budget just like everyone else. The Lord has met every single need that we have maybe not when I wanted but always right on time. I thought I finally made it looking at my life – I thought I was satisfied. But when money didn’t do what I thought it would and all was stripped away I discovered that it never really did what I thought it was doing. When our son was diagnosed with cancer, money didn’t fix it. Financial security compromised by a devastating illness. Supporting one home was enough but now there were two. I realized in that moment when everything stopped and the world stood still for a moment was that I had Jesus! I am so thankful or I would have fallen apart. Money and finances took a backseat in the midst of devastation there was a freedom and peace like never before. My job could wait. My employer would get by. The Lord would have to provide from that day forward because our son needed me. I was exactly where the Lord wanted me doing exactly what I was created to do. I hate cancer. But I love the faith we found in its wake. What the enemy sent to rob, kill and destroy us has failed miserably as we cultivate the Fruit of His Spirit and live in the Truth. I brought nothing into this world. I can take nothing with me. But if I have Jesus – I have all that I need to be satisfied both now and forever.
True godliness will bring contentment and satisfaction to your life. Money is not the economy of the Kingdom of God and not wealth in the eyes of God. Money is simply a vessel. Many have wandered from faith to pursue earthly satisfaction that now have many sorrows. The Lord will make a person rich adding NO SORROWS with it. (Proverbs 10:20) Money is not the problem but rather how you view it and what you feel for it. The Lord never said believers have to be poor, but to be rich in Jesus must not include any sorrow to be blessed. Our emotional attachment to money and things reveals the contents of our heart. If a lack of finances brings sadness and disappointment, than you are emotionally attached to it. This is a problem. (Matthew 6:24) Godliness is nothing more than god-like-ness. Those who live such a life are content if the Fruit of the Spirit prevails which are contradictory to our sinful nature and products of faith by trusting the Lord to meet every need. Godliness produces thankfulness.
Ecclesiastes 1:3-8 (NLT)
What do people get for all their hard work under the sun? Generations come and generations go, but the earth never changes. The sun rises and the sun sets, then hurries around to rise again. The wind blows south, and then turns north. Around and around it goes, blowing in circles. Rivers run into the sea, but the sea is never full. Then the water returns again to the rivers and flows out again to the sea. Everything is wearisome beyond description. No matter how much we see, we are never satisfied. No matter how much we hear, we are not content.
Dissatisfaction and discontentment are “empty” philosophies that take away a believer’s freedom and God-given right to prosper. Prosperity begins in the soul and works its way out into our life. (3 John 1:2-3) As our soul prospers, we will begin to prosper. But thankfulness begins with a sacrifice by faith. It is to give the Lord praise and thanksgiving before His Glory manifests in our life. (Psalm50:14-15) I thank the Lord every day for our son’s healing. It has happened three times thus far and the best is yet to come as He is healing and restoring our boy again right now! It is a sacrifice when he is tired from chemotherapy. It is a stretch when I fill up the big SUV for another drive across the state. It is a struggle when he is sick and throwing up. Face it, in this world thanksgiving can be tough! But you do it not based on what is seen but unseen. Faith is not required for what you can visualize but hope is for the impossible. These empty philosophies drain us. Thanksgiving fills us with expectation and reminds us of the Lord’s faithfulness. Your outcomes are not a product of this world but the future hope provided to you compliments of faith in the Lord. In the Name of Jesus Christ, I rebuke the generational curse of wanting, lacking and discontentment. I ask the Spirit of the Lord to fill each of us with thankfulness to overflowing! You must not waver but be firm in your faith. (James 1:5-7) The earth does not change and will soon pass away. But Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever! (Hebrews 13:8)
Philippians 4:11-13 (NLT)
Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.
You have everything you need to prosper in this life. Jesus Christ enables you to do everything with limitless power and strength. Stop looking to this world and its economy to provide for you. It is very limited. You were created to do the impossible. All things are possible by faith so choose to make a commitment to trust the Lord and follow Jesus. As your soul begins to prosper, so will you. You will overflow with thanksgiving and in all things be content! Be thank full!