Bible Studies for Life
Ex: 20:15-17; Ps. 37:1-6
I sometimes entertain myself by watching history in movies. Recently, Turner Classic Movies was the designated station of the evening for watching “Yankee Doodle Dandy,” a movie on the life of George Cohan.
Cohan filled Broadway with many historic hits that are often played today. During the early beginnings of his life he could never get a break in writing or performing. He met a producer named Sam Harris who was likewise looking for work. The relationship of Cohan and Harris launched 18 successful musicals and formed a partnership without a contract. All they ever had was a handshake.
What a challenge of personal character! A handshake was the signature stating that I will never steal from you; I will never covet what you have. Can someone trust you to pay off your car or pay the notes of your house without a binding contract? Are you willing to take the word of your close friend that they will pay you back the money borrowed from you? Do you have a neighbor who you trust with the key to your house and the code to the alarm system? Are you a person who can be trusted with those keys and alarm codes?
Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil. (Matt. 5:37)
This verse above all means your character means something. Your word should be as the old adage, “As good as Gold.” Any gray area between yes or no makes you a good candidate for a loose-tongued politician or a person without honor.
We should honor all relationships
We only need security from persons with little because robbery from home invasion is the largest crime in our communities. People taking what is not theirs breaks the eighth commandment. Thievery, robbery, and swindling have become epidemic, contributing to the lawlessness within society.
Stealing is such a terrible epidemic that it threatens the very foundation of society itself. We have government leaders who steal and misuse funds. White collar crime seems to be the norm rather than abnormal.
Stealing shows a disrespect for property and for human life. It leads to false deception of who you are, always creates some havoc, and can cause devastation. Stealing bankrupts families, companies, communities, and even nations. The casualty of stealing is the loss of personal integrity of the thief.
Resist keeping up with the Joneses
The acquisition of things tends to fill our minds with personal gratification. Those acquisitions usually leave us unsatisfied until we acquire something else that would bring pleasure. The problem with continuous accumulation of things is that we may reach beyond the point of what is reasonable or acceptable in the eyes of God and good healthy common sense.
There was a guy whose wife gave him a fishing boat for his birthday. He loved that boat and often invited his buddies to go out fishing. Many refused because it was a simple small boat with a troller motor. He walked into Bass Pro Shop near the mall and saw fishing boats with all the bells and whistles. Now he no longer wanted the gift of love from his wife, but something he could not afford.
Find contentment in God
Remember the fishing boat. If contentment is found in fishing, God already made the provision through his wife. Anything beyond contentment directs us toward personal pride.
My only grandchild was the center of attention from all the family one Christmas, receiving many gifts and toys. When it came time to choose what she would play with, she chose the wrapping paper.
Our personal drive toward prosperity should not be consumed with what is in boxes or the careful packaging to make it presentable so much as the hands that delivered the gift. Real relationships are not proven by what you get in terms of goods and services.
If your relationship with God really matters, honor Him in your personal dealings with all persons because God will continue to supply your needs and fulfill the desires of your true heart.