– Re-Finance (5) – Invest Money Wisely – August 14, 2016
lesson five (5) in our series entitled “Re-Finance: Ancient Wisdom for Money
scripture is Ecclesiastes 11:1-6
comes to your money, plan and invest wisely.
or at least most of us like to make wise investments. At the moment we invest,
we believe it is wise. Time will tell. Bad investments often teach us a
valuable lesson; don’t do it again or teaches us what to look for when we do
invest. Living teaches us. GOD is wisdom and HIS desire is for HIS children to
have such a relationship with HIM that HE is the ONE we go to for counsel.
Some may say
but I went to the LORD for counsel and things did not turn out like I expected.
I have been there and done that. I said, “But LORD, I asked YOU for guidance
and wisdom in this matter and it failed.” Do you know the answer I received?
“How else will you learn wisdom?” Ouch! I never anticipated that answer.
most of us, if not all, have baggage from many different sources. Some comes from
our ancestry. Some decisions come from the lifestyle and upbringing of our
family during our formative years and the circumstances of our parent or
parents. There are many natures and habits we have that cause us to make certain
decisions. Some are good and others are reactive and not based upon sound
judgment. Often, many of us have rough edges that have to be honed to get us to
the point where we can make wise decisions.
Many of us have
heard that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over expecting
a different result. We often fail to learn from our mistakes.
was written by Solomon to spare future generations from the bitterness of
learning through life’s experiences. The key is all humans are to build the
right relationship with GOD and seek wisdom from HIM. Ecclesiastes focuses upon
certain key issues such as:
8 What advantage then does the wise
man have over the fool? What [advantage] is there for the poor person who knows
how to conduct himself before others?
filled with uncertainties for both the wise and the foolish.
2 Everything is the same for everyone:
there is one fate for the righteous and the wicked, for the good and the
bad, for the clean and the unclean, for the one who sacrifices and the one who
does not sacrifice. As it is for the good, so it is for the sinner, as for the
one who takes an oath, so for the one who fears an oath.
line is that all humans die. SO what do we do between life and death? What we do
is in our control. We are free agents. Where do we go to for wisdom? GOD is the
source for all wisdom. It makes sense to seek the right relationship with HIM through
faith in CHRIST. Why JESUS? JESUS said it best in John 14:6:
6 Jesus told him, "I am the way, the
truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
Is JESUS the
only way to GOD or HE was a liar, lunatic or the True Promised Messiah? It is your
decision to make. Without a doubt, I believe JESUS is the only way. Why because
HE gave HIS life for all who will place their faith in HIM. Experience the miracle
of rebirth in your Spirit by asking JESUS to forgive you for your sins and for HIM
to come into your life now. Experience the joy of being GOD’S Son or Daughter and
knowing that you have eternal life now and into eternity. When you make this decision,
thank HIM for saving you and then tell a Christian friend what you have done. Blessings
to all who seek knowing JESUS as their Savior.
18 Wisdom is better than weapons of
war, but one sinner can destroy much good.
line is that although wisdom is powerful, wisdom does not dictate the outcome
because of the many variables which can alter the course of events.
So what can
we learn from our lesson?
line of Ecclesiastes is for all to honor, respect and reverence GOD. GOD’S
desire is for humans to use their resources wisely by seeking the right relationship
with HIM and applying the wisdom that they learn through this relationship.
Part of this relationship is for HIS children to invest wisely.
reflects a period in which trade and international contacts were common. There
was money to be made but also it was a time when money could be lost. It was a
time when those who were wise could do very well and those who were foolish
could lose all they had.
Let’s read Ecclesiastes 11:1-2:
in Life – Don’t Put All Of Your
Eggs Into One Basket
1 Send your bread on the surface of
the waters, for after many days you may find it.
2 Give a portion to seven or even to
eight, for you don't know what disaster may happen on earth.
all your eggs into one basket was a common phrase with which I grew up. My
grandfather raised chickens and the hens laid eggs. We harvested the eggs for
us to eat and to sell in the grocery. When we gathered the eggs, we did not
place them all in one basket. Simply, if we tripped and fell we ran the risk of
breaking some of the eggs, if not all of them. Eggs were important to our
family therefore we were to act responsibly to protect them.
wisdom instructs us to diversify. Most, if not all, advisors today tell us to
diversify because we simply cannot know all of the variables which can
influence our investments both positively and negatively. Ancient wisdom
reflected this advice.
cast your bread upon the water and send it in many directions. You will lose
some but others will come back to you.
The idea was
that goods were shipped both by sea and land. When you split up your goods and
send them by several different routes you reduce the potential for total
economic disaster. Storms at sea could result in your cargo being lost. If you
ship by land, the caravan could be attacked and your goods taken by thieves.
Therefore, select seven or eight different ways to ship your goods and hope
that some, if not all, will result in you receiving the money you hoped to
receive from them.
the life of Solomon flourished but you had to be wise when you sent your goods
to other locations. Diversify your investments and be patient to see what
returns to you. But even here one has to be careful. Things change and what
works one time needs to be carefully evaluated to determine if it is still
viable. Again, diversify.
Let’s read Ecclesiastes 11:3-4:
Misfortune May Arise But Keep Working
3 If the clouds are full, they will
pour out rain on the earth; whether a tree falls to the south or the north, the
place where the tree falls, there it will lie.
4 One who watches the wind will not
sow, and the one who looks at the clouds will not reap.
Verse 3 is a
maxim. A maxim is a short pithy statement expressing a general truth or a rule
of conduct e.g. actions speak louder than words.
reference to the clouds or the tree in verse 3 represent the potential for rain
or the tree landing where you want it to land. Whether or not the potential
will be beneficial to you and your plans will be determined after the fact. You
can plan but once action has been taken the results are out of your hands. Thus,
one decides whether or not to plant or harvest based upon the potential for
rain or it not raining. One cuts a tree which he or she has planned for it to
fall in a certain direction but once cut the potential is for unknown factors
to change its direction but once fallen then you have to deal with it. Life is
filled with uncertainties, but in all of your dealings, seek wisdom from GOD
and trust that HE will see you through all circumstances, good or bad. HE
teaches in all circumstances and HIS love for you is unfailing.
describes a person who is too cautious. Procrastination can be very harmful. It
pays to be cautious but there comes a time when as the old adage states “either
fish or cut bait.”
In the old
days farmers sowed seeds by hand. They would broadcast their seeds by casting
them such that they fell randomly on the plowed field. If the wind was blowing
hard they would wait because the seeds would be carried by the wind to only
heaven knew where they would fall. Therefore, when it was very windy, it would
be wise to wait but also one could not wait too long and the time to plant may
pass them by.
time came, grain had to be harvested at the right time. The harvested grain had
to be tied in bundles to dry so it could be thrashed. If the bundles were
harvested when wet they could spoil and rendered of no value. They could mold. A
judgment had to be made and a chance taken. Again, the idea is for the farmer
to seek wisdom from GOD and choose the right time to harvest.
Most, if not
all, decisions come from limited knowledge. We do our best when we seek GOD’S
help but even then things may not turn out like we would hope for.
mean that GOD has failed us? No, when things do not turn out like we think that
is when we go to our LORD and ask HIM to reveal to us what happened. If it was
to teach us then we need to learn the lesson well so that it will not be
repeated. If it was to test you, then may the test do its intended work! Life
upon earth is a training ground for eternity. Life is a partnership with GOD
through our relationship with CHRIST.
Christians must keep in mind the teaching of JESUS as written in Luke 11:11-13:
11 What father among you, if his son
asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead of a fish?
12 Or if he asks for an egg, will give
him a scorpion?
13 If you then, who are evil, know how
to give good gifts to your children, how
much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who
We must also
keep in mind that we can make bad decisions and when we do we must suffer the
consequences. But even when we do, GOD is in all things to bring about the best
conclusion as written in Romans 8:28:
28 We know that (GOD is in) all things
work (ing) together for the good of those who love God: those who are called
according to His purpose.
not control GOD but rather GOD controls all things. But certain decisions we
make have dire consequences but even when they do, GOD is working in our
Let’s read Ecclesiastes 11:5-6:
Life Is Uncertain, So Leave It All In
5 Just as you don't know the path of
the wind, or how bones [develop] in the womb of a pregnant woman, so you don't
know the work of God who makes everything.
filled with uncertainties but we are not to let that prevent us from taking the
action we need to take. We need food and resources to sustain us. Weather can
be a formidable foe to the farmer, to maritime and to caravans. Yet, life goes
on. These uncertainties are out of our control but always under the control and
authority of GOD. Bad things happen to Godly people but GOD is their strength
to see them through these times.
is a mystery. We know more about it today than ever before and it is a miracle
that all the complexities of embryology take place in an orderly fashion to produce
a healthy baby. Sometimes fetal development jumps track but because it does, we
trust that they will go according to plan, thus, most couples long for an
6 In the morning sow your seed,
and at evening do not let your hand rest, because you don't know which
will succeed, whether one or the other, or if both of them will be equally
reference to morning and evening refer to times and seasons. The point being
we, from our perspective, do not know what will succeed or fail. We seek wisdom
from GOD and move forward. If what we do does not turn out as we expected, we
learn from it and move on armed with this knowledge. Being in partnership with
GOD equips us with the resource to succeed. Most of us equate success with
wealth but success, in GOD’S eyes, is building a personal, intimate, loving
relationship with HIM regardless of the success as defined by the world.
line is that we do not know what will succeed or fail but with GOD’S help and
our due diligence we will succeed because building the right relationship with
GOD through thick and thin builds trust in HIM.
comes from, Herschel Hobbs Commentary, summer 2016, pages 117 and 118,
published by LifeWay, One LifeWay Plaza, Nashville, TN 37234-0175.
[Thus, the study
this week falls into that category of practical, real-life instruction. When it
comes to our money, how are we to act in responsible ways that are satisfying and
God-honoring? We have identified three steps we can take.
sensibly. That is the
message behind the admonition to diversify your investments. Even if you don’t have
a lot of money and have not made actual investments in stock, don’t be foolish with
what you have. Use good common sense.
diligently. We don’t
have the answers to everything and we can’t foresee the future to the degree we
would like. Nevertheless, rather than sit idly by, take action; keep working with
what you have. Do your due diligence.
faithfully. We cannot
understand all the things happening around us nor all that GOD is doing to bring
HIS plan to fulfillment. Nevertheless, we can continue to follow HIS instructions
for daily living and trust HIM to bring eternal purposes to pass. Thus, keep the
ends with a beautiful prayer:
is so much I don’t know and some of what I know I don’t understand. Help me not
to be so consumed with knowing that I fail to be trusting. I will do my best with
what I have, but foremost, I leave all things in Your hands. Amen] Blessings!!!