We may think that our schedule is ours or that our money was made by the works of our hands, but the reality is that we are not our own.
When challenged to give away our money or to spend time helping someone else, the kind of attitude we hold towards these sacrifices reveal where our true affections lie. Our willingness to be free with our schedules and our pocketbooks reveals how much we trust God to take care of our lives.
Read James 4:13-17:
- Are you the type of person who loves to make plans, or are you generally more spontaneous and non-committal?
- In what sense can we be prideful in making plans? Can we be prideful in not making plans?
- How does thinking about our lives as “smoke” or “vapor” check our pride about our lives and how we live them?
Read James 5:1-6:
- Explain your reactions to this passage. What emotions do you feel when you read it?
- Do you consider yourself financially rich? What would your life look like on a daily basis if you, according to your own definition, were rich?
- Based on what James writes, do you think it’s OK to be rich? Why or why not?
Read James 5:6-7:
- Do you tend to view waiting patiently as something that is active or inactive?
- What does the analogy of the farmer indicate about how God intends for you to live?
Taking it Home:
- In what kinds of circumstances are you most tempted to cling to your time and your money?
- What does it look like for you to give God control over your time and money at this point in your life?
Ways to Pray:
- Adoration: Think about “the unsearchable riches of Christ,” and praise Him for freely offering them to us all.
- Contrition: Confess any specific instances where you took advantage of someone you had power over.
- Thankfulness: Thank God for watching over and defending the disadvantaged when they cry out to Him.
- Supplication: Ask God to defend you in an area where you feel helpless and powerless.
Additional Scriptures to Engage with this week:
- Isaiah 32:1-8
- Daniel 4:34-37
- Proverbs 30:1-9
- Hebrews 13:18-21
- Deuteronomy 8:11-20
- Matthew 6:24-34