Thursday, December 26, 2013

How to be Rich

How to be Rich by Andy Stanley is not the type of manual you may think it is. It is not a manual to help you earn more money. It will not talk about portfolios or investments. In fact, the book actually assumes you are rich already. Now, I know I often do not think of myself in that way. I worry about my finances, I cut coupons, and I do not have a large savings account. However, according to Andy Stanley, I am rich. And when I look at the facts he states, I guess I would have to agree. I live in one of the wealthiest societies ever. I have enough money to provide for my family, and I have a roof over my head. Stanley says if you have ever had to decide whether or not to upgrade your cell phone, or choose which restaurant in which to have dinner, that you are rich. So following Stanley's logic, if I admit to being rich, what does this mean for me? This book is a guide to help you become more generous. To learn how to handle your riches in a way that is honoring to God. The Bible tells us to store up riches in Heaven, and Stanley argues that the way to do that is to be a good steward with the materials you have on earth. Stanley reminds us that everything belongs to God. The money I have in the bank, the house I live in, even the food I eat, is not mine. God provides all of it. I could argue that I work hard for those things, and that may be true. But in reality, God gives me the ability to do that hard work. He provides the job, the intellectual and physical ability, and the means for me to do those things. When I look at my possessions and money in that mind-set, I realize none of it is mine. When I tithe, I am not giving part of my money to God. I am honoring Him as the Lord of my life by returning what is His to Him. However, Stanley says tithing is not enough. God does not want us to simply obey a principle and then feel we are free to do whatever we wish with the remainder of our money. Stanley says generosity is a lifestyle that stems from the right understanding about God and our role as stewards. When we realize what God has done and continues to do for us, we want to honor Him by acting in a similar way. We want to share His blessings with others. The heart of being rich then, is to be generous. God never says money or possessions are evil. But what we do with them matters. God gives us things so we may bless others, so others may see a generous God. Our actions need to be a reflection of understanding His blessings toward us. Stanley incorporates true stories and Scripture to make these truths understandable. His writing style is appealing and draws you in. It is like listening to a true friend who loves God with all of his heart. And it makes you want to live that type of lifestyle too. If you don't feel rich, or you worry about finances, but you love God and want to share Him with others, this is a wonderful book to help you see how all of those thoughts and feelings can go together. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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