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September 16, 2020

How Money Amplifies us—for Better or Worse.

I’ve noticed, as a person of faith, that 1 Timothy 6:10 often gets misquoted:

“For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”

Most of the time, people insist the scripture states how money is the root of all evil.

Nope.

As human beings, we so often get money all wrong: its purpose, its pleasure, and its very existence in our daily lives.

Yes, money is an issue for each of us. And we’ve all heard the phrase, “Money is no object.” But it turns out to be the exact opposite of reality, doesn’t it?

So, let’s take a little stroll through money and see what it is about this sucker that can bring so much promise…and pain.

Money is an amplifier.

Do you ever notice that what we spend our money on seems to indicate a kind of theme—sometimes an exaggerated, caricature-infused theme—to who we are as individuals?

For instance, if we look at our bank statements and see how we spent $3,000 last month at GummyBearsForever.com, it might not be a gigantic leap to assume we have a sweet tooth, or at least a gummy tooth. We like candy.

And our “candy” can be anything.

Clothes. Shoes. Drugs. Charities that help starving children or cute, fuzzy animals. Creepy porcelain dolls that keep staring at you wherever you stand in the room.

What we value is what, sooner or later, we buy—or, at least, try to find a way to buy.

Look at your own ledger right now. What is your theme?

Money amplifies. If we want to improve and help a situation, it’s an amplifier of that intention. If we want debauchery, it can, likewise, amplify that as well. And, more than likely, we’ll need bail money.

It’s not about shaming anyone for their guilty pleasures. We need a bit of that in our lives, from time to time.

But it speaks to the issues of our hearts and what they focus on. What is that…truly? And be honest.

“Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” ~ Proverbs 4:23

Is it something that can bring healing…or destruction? We have a say in creating that reality. What will we choose?

Money is a tool.

“… money answereth all things.” ~ Ecclesiastes 10:19

By itself, money is neutral. It’s when the attachments and the associations come on board that we seem to run into problems.

For some of us, that may mean we demonize money as “bad,” as something that only encompasses greed and corruption. Perhaps, we were instructed as children that money is carnal, sinful, lustful. Maybe we were shamed for saving coins in our piggy banks.

Money can fund charities, feed the homeless, cure disease, and offer practical, needed help the very second it’s needed—provided it’s allowed to function in that capacity as a tool.

And that largely depends on us.

Money is a tool, like a hammer. We can build with it. It can be used to protect, nurture, and help.

Money is a weapon.

Or, conversely, like a hammer, money can be used as a weapon.

Yes, a hammer can also destroy as easily as it can build; a hammer can kill or maim. It all depends upon the person holding it.

Just like money.

“For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.” ~ 1 Timothy 6:10

And again, we’re back to greed, along with its offspring like corruption, extortion, murder, and theft.

And, before we get too smug with ourselves, reassuring ourselves that we don’t engage in any of that extreme behavior, that we’re not criminals, we are brought back to day-to-day reality, all the same.

Money can be weaponized in smaller, more subtle ways. We can view money as a means with which to control, exert power, and even perpetuate toxic love.

And we can all be guilty of doing this within the context of relationships. We can dangle the hope, the false promise over someone, assuring them that, yes, if he or she agrees to certain arrangements or parameters, then, indeed, there will be a payoff, making the whole thing worthwhile.

But it isn’t that clear cut, is it? After all, there exists the phrase, “when you marry for money, you get what you pay for” for a reason. A price will be paid.

And what is the payment? Your life? Your health? Your sanity?

Is that a fair trade?

Each of us, then, would do well to remember we can just as easily harm someone by our attitudes and actions concerning money, as help them. Our thoughts can determine our deeds.

Will we allow ourselves to use money as a weapon, in big or small ways?

Money is a healer.

Before we fall into despair that money is just too hopeless when handled by us mere mortals, we also have the capacity to employ it as a healing instrument.

Again, it speaks to opportunity—and our willingness—to take the opportunity.

“Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of thine hand to do it.” ~ Proverbs 3:27

The decision to allow for healing is not passive. It requires deliberate, conscious, action-filled caring and intention.

Money is no object. Indeed, it is not.

Rather, it is a fully vibrant and engaged life-sustaining force. But we need to make that choice for ourselves, each time we deal with money.

Will we?

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