For whatever reason, the trend the last few months has been spending. Christmas aside (we don't spend a lot on the holiday anyway), bills have been presenting themselves in an unwelcoming manner. Even though we have health insurance--a relative joke these days--our medical expenses for the birth of our son drains the savings account. On top of that, the Nissan required some engine repair totalling $1000, and Aaron just called me with the news that he has 13 cavities and a possible root canal that need attention (the up side is that he's going to be laying off the soda for awhile). Our utilities have gone up the last two months and I'm really holding out hope for a backyard fence come spring.
As I contemplate all of these money-sucking events, anxiety creeps in and I start to worry.
"What if..." Of course, I can't control the health expenses on having a child, nor when a car's timing chain decides to go kaput. I do my best to moderate our expenditures in a wise manner (a God-honoring endeavor as stewards of his money), but ultimately all that we have, or don't have, is up to Him. Aaron's job is a gift. My job is a gift. Our savings is a gift. Our possessions too.
If I look to money to rescue me, hold me secure, or satisfy me, I going to be greatly disappointed in life... constantly grasping at something that I can't control. And as the Bible says, I'll also come to ruin.
Ecclesiastes 5:10 says that "he who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves abundance with its income. This too is vanity."
In Mark, when Jesus sends out his disciples, he commands them to avoid taking extra money with them. I wondered why that was. Isn't it a good thing to save money and have some security? My theory is that Christ wanted them to remember that their provision came from him. They were to humbly submit to Christ's leadership, spreading the gospel, and living in community and dependence on God. Their mindset was to be more eternal than temporal.
"Hold everything earthly with a loose hand, but grasp eternal things with a deathlike grip."
~C. H. Spurgeon