I grew up in an ecclesiastical culture where money was not glorified.  Even as a teenager I was puzzled as to why we didn’t have what other kids had; big homes, etc., etc.  A few years of my childhood we lived with my grandpa.  He was rich, but no one knew it. My dad was an evangelist and most of the time, pastored a church.  It seemed as though we were “pore” as Job’s turkey.  Grandpa gave my folks money from time to time, but my mom and dad gave it to the church.

When in college I yearned for nice things and I worked my way through by singing/entertaining, meeting people with unbelievable wealth; met and stayed in the home of the largest school bus manufacturer in America, sang at Winston Rockefeller’s ranch, R. G. LeTourneau (inventor and builder of huge earth-moving machines), and met old Sam Walton.  I wanted to “be somebody.” In recent years I’ve stayed in the homes of the internationally famous – wealth beyond what the mind can conceive.


“‘Foxes have dens to live in, and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place even to lay his head.’” (Luke‬ ‭9:58‬) If Jesus was poor, why did he say so much about money and the things money can buy?  In fact, there are more than 2,000 places in the Bible where money and stuff-stuff is mentioned.  A rich kid came to Jesus and asked him what he should do to be saved. Jesus told him to sell his stuff. “Ooooooh nonono!”

You see, Jesus is challenging us the get our PRIORITIES straight!

“No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.” (esv)

The Good Life

OK. HERE I AM WITH A MINI ANTHOLOGY [whatever that is]!
Years ago, I was the executive assistant to a man who was the largest contributor to a major political party in a certain state [left-wing, of course]. Let’s face it – I had just come out of the ministry and now I was associating with …, well, you know, The Left!  
I needed a whole new wardrobe, someone to watch over my kids and a different way of thinking.  It seemed my future as it had been from  youth was totally upended.  To put it another way, the rug had been pulled out from underneath me, albeit floating in money. 
For many years my life had been spent associating with church people, living from hand to mouth financially and always thinking “what will other people think?” Now I had money, associating with well known people and in many cases with the rich and famous; the political class, the unbelievably wealthy and the Hollywood crowd. The biggest issue, however, was the separation from the church culture.   The people in the Hollywood/monied/political world seemed to be free of restraint. They talked freely, joked raucously, and laughed without restraint (some were irritating).  And I noticed something else – they had no need to secretly gossip. They just blurted it out!
There WERE A COUPLE OF THINGS that bound them all together – well 90% of them – IDEOLOGY. 
Yes, I know many of them were terribly insecure even though they may have been rich and famous.  But that yawning and gnawing skepticism of anything related to “America the Beautiful” and/or Evangelical Christianity got on my nerves.  It was all about making deals and how to screw their foes  (and in some cases, those perceived to be below them). I have often stated that arrogance should have been included in The Ten Commandments.  I’ll admit, sitting next to movie and TV stars, politicians of note, and spending the night in the mansions of the internationally known,  was somewhat heady.
On the other hand, “what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul.” (Mark 8:36)
I’m telling you, when Jesus brings peace to your heart, the lifestyle of this world will never satisfy! My mother sang in church, “I’d rather have Jesus than silver or gold;
I’d rather be His than have riches untold; I’d rather have Jesus than houses or lands; I’d rather be led by His nail-pierced hand “Than to be the king of a vast domain Or be held in sin’s dread sway; I’d rather have Jesus than anything this old world affords today.”
(Rhea Miller)