I guess by now you might realize what challenge I am giving to you. Would you be willing to pray the same risky prayer that I did, “Holy Spirit, teach me to prosper?” Will you take God at His Word as we are studying it?
I want to caution you not to think about getting a second or third job and working twice as hard to become prosperous. If this is what you are thinking, you are missing the point. Maybe if you had five jobs, then you would have more money. You just would not sleep. No, this is not God’s will. This is poverty thinking. I like to think of the example of a farmer with his crops growing while he sleeps at night. He works hard during the day, but his seed is growing in the nighttime while he is sleeping.
I love the scripture found in Ecclesiastes 2:26, “To the man who pleases him, God gives wisdom, knowledge and happiness, but to the sinner he gives the task of gathering and storing up wealth to hand it over to the one who pleases God. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.”
Peter Hartgerink is from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Here is his story: When I first heard this teaching on prosperity I was starting a new Information Technology consulting business. Over the next couple of years, I realized that God was speaking to me and telling me he wanted to prosper me both financially and spiritually. This was a new thought to me. Since then many things have changed in my life.
When I began my business I thought of it only as a means of funding what I thought was my real ministry, which was church-planting. I have since learned that I am better at business than I am at church-planting. That used to bother me but now I see that it’s simply a matter of developing the areas in which God has given me grace instead of striving to be something I am not. I have learned to take a more entrepreneurial approach to life. I now see that managing finances with skill, wisdom, integrity and generosity is a godly calling. I want to be like Joseph, a man who can give out to others and sow funds into Kingdom purposes because I have learned to steward finances faithfully and well.
The teaching in this book is one of the main influences that helped me to get to where I am today. I especially appreciate the emphasis on giving as a key to keeping our hearts free from materialism and greed.
Prosperity of soul will cause us to prosper in all areas. It is a revelation. It comes out from within us. It is not the result of our striving. What could Joseph have done to promote himself from slavery to the second highest government official in all of Egypt? It could not have happened by his own effort. The Holy Spirit is a patient teacher. There is a proverb that states the path of the righteous is like the dawning sun, shining brighter and brighter until the full day. Let faith for biblical prosperity grow inside of you and nothing will be able to contain it.
Your finances are not the responsibility of the government, your family or the church. If you feel like a victim of fate, the lack of opportunities, the choices of others or circumstances beyond your control, I want to encourage you to take a fresh look at your situation. It might seem like you are in a hopeless, financial cycle and you cannot do anything to change it. It may feel like this is your lot in life. But you can do something to change your financial condition. Your finances are your responsibility. It is great if others help, but the responsibility is yours. You are the one who must believe in God as El Shaddai.
You are currently reaping what you have sown in your finances. Allow the Holy Spirit to show you what changes may be necessary. You will hear more of my story in the blogs to come. I am sure yours will be different, but just as exciting. Pause now, find a quiet place and ask the Holy Spirit to teach you to prosper and let your adventure begin.