Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Money Matters

I'm on vacation, so I'm going to be short on commentary.

A common theme in my study and blog reading lately has been finances; either the finances of the church, of individuals, or of this country. Maybe the recent debate over the "debt ceiling" stirred everyone's thoughts on this. But that wasn't our frame of mind the other morning as my wife and I were talking about stewardship. Coincidentally I had just read this post over at Cerulean Sanctum which hit on the very same points. (that's two posts in a row that Dan totally nails it IMHO, blogging on points that are on my heart at the same time he posts them.Three, if you count yesterday's post) I also recalled the first chapter of David Platt's Radical Together that asks us if the "good" things we're doing as a church are keeping us from doing the great thing of advancing the Gospel.

MSN Money had a recent article on "Rev. Billy" who isn't actually a minister (though since his growth in popularity has since been ordained) but makes his mark "preaching" against materialism and consumerism.

A combination of recent polls show that as financial difficulties hit people are less, not more, likely to attend church. That's contrary to conventional wisdom.

Jared Wilson asks what it means to be "Rich Towards God" over at A Gospel Driven Church.

Mark Lafler hits a hot button debating filing for bankruptcy over at Personally, I came to the conviction a while ago that carrying debt, in and of itself, is a sin because when you sign that receipt at the store you are pledging that you will pay it back. (Mortgages, student loans, and car payments are different in that they are intentionally scheduled to be paid off) Mark's argument is that even if you are forced by your circumstances to file for bankruptcy, that the "Christian" thing to do is to make every effort to still pay off your debt. I agree whole heartedly. (I don't want to come across as self-righteous here, either. My family is on the long climb out of debt, but we are committed to be debt free ASAP)

Finally Jonathan Keck at Theology21 asks if we really believe "In God We Trust" with our finances and shares his personal experience of losing a job.

(Meanwhile, we are paying out the nose for our all too short vacation. Such is life)

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