"Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life."
Money, Wealth, & Christian Living
The Kingdom Impact of Saving & Investing
Do me a favor: Stop reading this and take a few minutes and play with the Compound Interest Calculator.
Just plug some numbers in and see what happens. Maybe make an initial investment of $3000 - $5000. Use 5 or 6% for an annual interest rate. It's a not-too-shabby average for stock market investments.
Now play with the rest of the numbers. Invest $100, $250, and $400 a month for 30, 40, and 50 years.
Did you see what happened? Were you surprised? It's true; the end results can be pretty amazing.
If you start investing a little bit of your paycheck at just 25 years old (or you start investing on behalf of your children when they are born), you can rack up a lot of money by the time you retire. That's the beauty of time, discretion, discipline, and this beautiful little thing we call compound interest (i.e. earning interest on the interest from your investments; check it out!).
Playing with that calculator might be a little more powerful than me saying, "the Bible encourages us to save money for the future." If anything, it is a lot of fun to see how that chart seems to blow up towards the later decades.
Of course, the Word of God is powerful and active, and there are plenty of Bible verses that express the wisdom of saving:
The wise see danger ahead and avoid it (like old age!), but fools keep going and get into trouble. Prov. 22:3
Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise. Without having any chief, officer, or ruler, she prepares her bread pin summer and gathers her food in harvest. Prov. 6:6-8
Granted, it isn't appropriate to say that saving is explicitly commanded in the Bible. After all, some people are extremely poor and simply can't save much of anything. But for most Americans, it is not only possible, it is wise.
Saving not only shows your heart is not consumed with consuming, it also shows that you are looking to build safeguards and opportunities for the future.
For instance, if you loose your job, you don't have to panic if you've been wisely putting money aside. You will have a little in the wing to tie you over until the Lord provides that new means of income.
When you reach an elderly state and cannot work, if you have wisely invested, you will not become a financial burden for your children and grandchildren. Instead, you can become a blessing by "leaving an inheritance for your children's children" (Prov. 12:33).
What's more, godly investing can become an asset to the kingdom. Go back to the Compound Interest Calculator. Plug in your numbers again. This time use 100 years. Can you guess what you might turn up?
Investing $400 a month for a century equates to over 14 million dollars.
That number is staggering. Not only would your forthcoming generations not have to worry about buying insurance (and probably have some pretty cool vacations!), you could single handedly turn the world for Christ.
Just imagine how many missionaries could be supported, how many churches could be planted, how many places of worship could be built, and how many Bibles could be distributed all over the world.
Such things do not come overnight though, and they certainly do not come to the one who greedily lives for this moment. One must be disciplined to be penny-wise and have a vision for the future.
Indeed, it doesn't take a great amount of money. It may only be a small fraction of your income that is needed. But we should not doubt that the Lord can do great things with time, discipline, and wisdom.
FAMILY OF THE WEEK FOR PRAYER
Kirt & Stacy Bachman
Join us for Lunch!
This Lord's Day we will enjoy a time of extended fellowship after worship. We'd love for you to pull up a chair and join us for a great lunch while we do. Families are asked to bring a side and/or a dessert; the church will provide a main course, drink, and place settings.