Is It Just a Money Issue?

Written by: Burk Parsons

Several years after my father’s death in 1992 I found an old shoebox among my father’s belongings. Among the various items in the shoebox, I came across a stack of letters that my father had written just prior to his death. As I began to read the first letter I quickly realized he had written them to me but that he never had the opportunity to give them to me because his cancer consumed his body more quickly than the oncologist had expected. In one of the letters, my father wrote, “Learn to live with a little less.” 

I have never forgotten that admonition, and having often wondered what made my father’s generation different from my own, I have come to the following conclusions: My father’s generation knew what it was to live with a little less. My generation always seems to “need” just a little more. My father’s generation asked this question of God, family, neighbor, and country: “How can I serve you with my time, money, and resources?” My generation asks, “How can you serve me with your time, money, and resources?” My father’s generation was a generation of honorable, principled, and hard-working men and women who felt truly blessed by God to be alive, to have the health to give of themselves to others, and to be fortunate enough to give of their time, money, and resources so that future generations could prosper. My generation is consumed with consumption. It is the generation of entitlement, instant gratification, and expediency. My generation has no understanding of what our fathers and forefathers fought for, what they sacrificed, and how much they gave of their time, money, and resources.

This is not just an issue about money but about how we worship God as stewards of all that He has entrusted to us as we live before His face each and every day. Nevertheless, we must never forget that it is the love of money that is “a root of all kinds of evils” (1 Tim. 6:10). In his book Respectable Sins, Jerry Bridges, one from among my father’s generation, writes, “If money wins out in our lives, it is not God but we who lose. Ultimately, God does not need our money. If we spend it on ourselves, it is we who become spiritual paupers” (p. 169). 



About Jian Ming Zhong

In short, I am a five point calvinist, amillennial, post-trib rapture, paeudobaptistic (not for salvation), classical cessationism , and covenantal. I embrace Reformed Theology and subscribe to the WCF 1647. I do not break fellowship with anyone who holds to the essentials of the faith (i.e., the Trinity, the Deity of Christ, Jesus' Physical Resurrection, Virgin Birth, Salvation by Grace through Faith alone, Monotheism, and the Gospel being the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus) but does not affirm Calvinist Theology in the non-essentials. I strongly believe that God's grace and mercy are so extensive that within the Christian community there is a wide range of beliefs and as long as the essentials are not violated, then anyone who holds to those essentials but differs in the non-essentials is my brother or sister in Christ. Romans 11:36 "For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To whom be Glory forever. Amen!"
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