Mark 4:18-19, And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the Word, and the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lust of other things entering in, choke the Word and make it unfruitful.
Jesus has called us and commanded us to be fruitful Christians for his glory and for the good of others. He desires, not only that we bear fruit, but that our fruit would remain [John 15:1-8, 16]. A fruitful Christian life should be our heart’s desire!
There are no doubt many things the hinder us from being fruitful [fruit of the Spirit and fruits of service] Christians, but according to Jesus, as well as the Apostle Paul [1 Timothy 6:6-11], it appears that one of the primary causes of a lack of fruitfulness in our lives would be “the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lust of other things.” As one well-known and well-respected pastor has said often, “Stuff, stuff, stuff is killing us.”
On a regular basis, it would do us much good if we would have a little self-examination, a spiritual check up if you will, and prayerfully consider whether or not the virus of materialism has subtly entered into our hearts and life. One man who seemed to get it (at least a lot more than I do), when it came to this matter of money and possessions was John Wesley. Wesley often offered four questions to help his hearers decide how to spend the money that are worthy of our prayerful pondering:
- In spending this money, am I acting like I owned it, or am I acting like the Lord’s trustee?
- What Scripture requires me to spend this money in this way?
- Can I offer up this purchase as a sacrifice to the Lord?
- Will God reward me for this expenditure at the resurrection of the just?
Like you, I want my life to be fruitful, therefore, it is imperative of me to, on a regular basis, check my heart concerning this matter. To be honest with you, when I do the “test” often comes back “positive.”
Just a moment of reflection!!!