God clearly tells us in His Word not to worry about tomorrow because it is not guaranteed. This lends itself to the idea of Carpe Diem – live for the moment!
However, He also instructs us to be wise with our money and investments and to be prepared for the future.
I don’t know about you, but sometimes I find it hard to properly balance these two concepts. On the one hand I feel I should enjoy life and that spending money on experiences and good times with the ones I love is usually appropriate. On the other hand, I feel that I don’t always properly save or prepare for the future.
What is the proper balance?
It seems like some people are so wrapped up in saving for retirement that they miss life by passing on experiences with loved ones that will last a lifetime and are crucial to good relationship development. Some people don’t even tithe or give to charity in lieu of “saving for the future” or in fear of not having enough for themselves. Giving is a biblical principle and God promises that if we give, we will always have what we need.
What if today is the last day of your life? What if “saving” too much prevents you from enjoying life right here, right now? Or keeps you from freely and joyfully giving to those who are in need?
I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately, so I decided to look at some related Scripture. I am trying to reduce my debt and start saving while still giving as much as possible AND enjoying my life right now since that is all I am guaranteed!
Matthew 6:25-27 says, “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?”
Luke 6:38 refers to giving and His promise to us when we do. “Give, and it shall be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
This is encouraging! I can attest to this as I am blessed beyond what I deserve! Give with joy, and you will always have what you need plus more to give away. Proverbs 22:9 says, “A generous man will himself be blessed, for he shares his food with the poor.”
And finally, the balance. We also must be wise with our spending and our giving, for if we spend all we have, we will have none left to give. Debt removes some of our freedom, and if we are not careful we can be overtaken by it.
“The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.” Proverbs 22:7
“In the house of the wise are stores of choice food and oil, but a foolish man devours all he has.” Proverbs 21:20
Clearly Scripture endorses wisdom and saving for a rainy day. It also encourages us to give generously without worrying about how it may affect our future.
So, do I live for the day and help those God puts in my path or on my heart? Do I spend money and time on recreation with family and friends regularly because I am only guaranteed today? Do I sock some funds away for the future so that I have a cushion for the tough times?
My conclusion. YES, YES and YES.
Pray for God to help you find the proper balance. Put your trust in Him as you give, that He will always provide what you need with more to give away. And at the same time, enjoy your life with gusto! Work hard AND play hard! He is teaching me that it is possible to do it all and do it well.
Now, stop worrying about your future. Enjoy every moment with your loved ones. And find a place where you can give your time and resources to help those in greater need.
This will make your life RICH indeed!