Divided Loyalty

If you are the pastor or leader of a church, you should have heard one very common excuse from church members for not attending a church service or a cell meeting.” I am busy”…” I have to go somewhere…..”

One of the most obvious battleground of our divided loyalties is our finances. The way we manage our finances is an external expression of an inner spiritual condition. In a study conducted in the United States a few years ago, almost half (40 percent) of the Christians who participate in the survey admitted to spending more than they earned. In American Protestant churches, only 3 to 5 percent of its members give 10 percent or more of their income to the Lord’s work. 

I am not too sure of the Christian situation in Singapore though. The unfortunate reality is that the economic statistics inside the church are not much different from those outside. How sad it would have been if some unreached group in the mission field was not reached for Christ because of our hesitation to give on a mission Sunday in church !!

We are spiritual giants and shout “Amen, Praise the Lord !” in church but when it comes to our finances, many of us follow the same principles as our non Christian neighbors.In Luke 16:10, the Lord Jesus gave us the absolute principle of management. “Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.” The way we manage our financial life is often very secretive in our lives as it is mostly hidden from others. It is not as obvious as our participation in worship services or cell group activities. No one knows how we spend on our money. Even our spouses does not know how we manage our finances. But our Lord kept reminding us “Whoever can be trusted with very little…..”

On one side, we love the Lord and we want to seek His Kingdom and His righteousness first (Matthew 6:33).But on the other side, we can’t detach from the lures of this world. We want to serve God but we also want to look to the world’s enticements. Our churches are full of people with split personalities. On our side, we see a “Godly Christian””living his Christian life, On every Sundays, he goes to church faithfully and follows all the rituals and does what every good Christian should do…but on the weekdays, another person emerges, he does not behave as a Christian. he is arrogant and talks about how much he made from the stock market or what is the latest car model that he just bought.

We are called to be the Light and Salt of the world. When the salt loses its taste, it becomes useless and have to be thrown away. Let’s be the Light and salt that Jesus has called us to be…

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