Aim: To realise our call to root in wisdom our need to generate and use money and prosperity.
Wise people prosper (Ps 1:1-3): Happy are thosewho do not follow the advice of the wicked,or take the path that sinners tread,or sit in the seat of scoffers;but their delight is in the law of the Lord,and on his law they meditate day and night.They are like treesplanted by streams of water,which yield their fruit in its season,and their leaves do not wither. In all that they do, they prosper.
Solomon’s prayer for wisdom (1 Kings 3:9-13a): Solomon said, “Give your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern your people, able to discern between good and evil; for who can govern this your great people?” It pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this.God said to him, “Because you have asked this, and have not asked for yourself long life or riches, or for the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern what is right, I now do according to your word. Indeed I give you a wise and discerning mind; no one like you has been before you and no one like you shall arise after you.I give you also what you have not asked, both riches and honour all your life”.
Many people believe that money is unspiritual, and so they avoid it. But money is neither good nor bad – it’s neutral. We may refer to it as an energy that can be used to develop both our individual selves and our society. In fact, for the world to evolve for the better, we need more people who are willing to enter into the arena of money and begin using this very powerful energy for good purpose.
The author of Psalm 1 and King Solomon reveal to us an important truth: prosperity and riches develop our authentic selves and society only when they are generated and employed wisely.
Solomon could have asked for riches, power, or revenge on his enemies, but instead he asked for wisdom so that he could help others. His example could improve our modern-day conduct, which is so often driven by greed and selfishness. We would do well, each day, to pray for wisdom – not just knowledge but wisdom. Knowledge can accomplish much good, but it can also be used to abuse wealth, to harm and destroy. Wisdom, instead, lives not only in the intellect but also and above all in the heart. Hence, Wisdom will never do wrong and will always relate to wealth and money in ways that favour authentic human-spiritual growth.
We are all called to take on the responsibility to associate healthy moral values in our relationship with money. I would go as far as to say that we are to make earning money a creative and spiritual activity. This is what enables us to use the gift of abundance for our good and the good of others.
Personal Reflection and Sharing
How do I describe, today, my typical relationship with money?
How do I understand the call to “use money wisely”? What is my experience in this regard?