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Monday, August 26, 2013

Entitlement or Contentment Study

Godliness with contentment, Love of Money, contentment Hebrews 13:5
Compared to the rest of the world, America is in a financial "league of its own." We "save too little, spend too much and borrow excessively."(1) Despite the 2008 financial crisis, most Americans still spend more than they earn.(2) 

My grandparents:
  • lived in a tiny house making additions when they had the money.
  • saved until they could afford large purchases.
  • vacationed only after the bills were paid.
In this decade, we spend more for a pair of shoes than we spent on our first car,(3) and inflation doesn't account for all of it.

Our attitudes toward spending are cross-generational, and they stem from two major problems: 
1. A lack of contentment 
2. A sense of entitlement 

I'm guilty myself but...

I'm asking God to help me recognize this as sin and remember Hebrews 13:5: 
"Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have."

(1) NPR, Why Americans Spend Too Much
(2) "A 2012 Federal Reserve Survey of Consumer Finances calculated that just 52% of American households earn more money than they spend." Bad Money Habits
(3) I bought my used 55 Chevy for $150 in 1968 : )

Bible Study

Lack of contentment and a sense of entitlement are similar, stemming from our desire to have things we can't afford, things which God has not given us. But a sense of entitlement takes discontent to a higher and more ungodly level. It is the self-deception that tells us we deserve things we can't afford. 

Godliness with contentment, Love of Money, contentment Hebrews 13:5
Even if we spend within our income, it doesn't mean we make consumer choices that honor God. The verses below talk about godly contentment and a godly perspective of money and belongings. 

Read through them, glean as many points as you can, write the points down, and ponder them throughout the week. And be sure to check my insights linked at the bottom and share what you've learned. Thanks, Gail 

Matthew 6:19-21, 24-25:  Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also ... 24 No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money. 25 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 than food, and the body more than clothes? 

1 John 2:15-17: Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them. 16 For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world. 17 The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever. 

Philippians 4:12-13: I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do all this through him [Jesus] who gives me strength. 

Copyright 2013, Gail Burton Purath, BiteSizeBibleStudy.com
All Scripture NIV unless otherwise noted

After doing this study, you can check out my insights HERE.

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