READ HEBREWS 13:5
Some people say that money is bad. If you have too much, it will control you. If you have too little, you’ll always be focused on how to get more. But money alone isn’t bad. This verse tells us that the "LOVE FOR" money is the problem. We need money to live and to buy the things we want and need. But if we love it more than other more important things, then it can become bad.
Wherever you focus your time and energy says something about what you love. That’s why Jesus warned us to not be controlled by a love for money. Instead, Jesus wants you to be happy with what you have.
Grab a quarter from your piggy bank or ask an adult for one. Place a piece of paper on top of the quarter and rub the side of a pencil over it to create a coin rubbing. Around the rubbing, write the words "Be happy with what you have."
THANK God for all that He’s given you.
READ MATTHEW 6:19-21
Take a look around the room where you sleep and look at all your "stuff." Grab a piece of paper. Set a timer for two minutes and write down as many things in the room as you can. Ready? Go!
If we could actually write down every single thing we have, the list might be pretty long. And you might even find something that you completely forgot you even had! Everything on your list will eventually wear out, or get lost or broken. Moths or bugs will destroy it.
Jesus wasn’t saying having stuff isn’t bad. It’s valuing your stuff over your relationships with others that’s bad. Jesus knew that stuff would never make us truly happy because stuff doesn’t last. So make sure you focus on the people around you and put your relationships with them over any of the stuff on that list. Put your list somewhere safe where you can find in next week.
ASK God to help you put people before your stuff.
Do you know what jealousy is? To be jealous simply means to want what someone else has. A jealous person looks at others and says, "That’s not fair. How come he has that and not me?" You wouldn’t want to be friends with person who is always jealous of you. So, how can YOU avoid being jealous of your friends?
It starts with how you feel on the inside. Contentment is possible when you trust God for all that you need. Because when you say something like "how come he has that instead of me?" what you’re really saying is, "I don’t like the choices you’ve made for me God. I think my way is better."
If you’re jealous, it’s impossible to be content. Jealousy rots your bones. But contentment brings peace. To remind you of this promise, draw a heart below.
LOOK for ways to trust God to provide for you and give you a peaceful heart.
READ EXODUS 16:2-3
The Israelites were frustrated. They were tired and hungry. They didn’t know where they were headed or how long it would take to get there. As a result, they complained. They had just been rescued from slavery. God sent Moses to guide them and parted the Red Sea for them. But they still wanted to go back. Suddenly their current circumstance seemed somehow worse than being slaves back in Egypt. Hard to imagine, right?
They were so focused on the life they knew that they couldn’t experience the freedom God had given them. We do that sometimes too. Maybe we think back to last school year when the teacher was "nicer" or we had less homework or the spelling words weren’t quite as hard. But contentment isn’t a "remember when" thing. It’s a right now thing. Contentment is about enjoying the moment you’re in in the here and now. Don’t be like those whining Israelites who couldn’t find happiness outside of Egypt. Think about what you DO have today. Because when you focus on what you used to have, you can miss what you have RIGHT now.
KNOW that God can help you choose to focus on what you have right now.