As I reflect this morning on many things, sadly people who are too focused on things of this World keep trying to pull me down to their foolish level where they focus too much on money matters. Sure, money is important in our World and we should save, but it’s not the MOST important thing we have. Please read on for 2 well-known Wisemen’s recommendations on money. Ben Franklin provides us some practical Worldly advice and the Wise Solomon provides us some Wiser Spiritual advice on Money.
Ben Franklin’s top 5 quotes:
1. “A penny saved is a penny earned.”
I recommend saving AT LEAST 10% of your take home pay. Actually pay yourself first before your other bills. Make it an automatic deduction from your paycheck.
2. “Having been poor is no shame, being ashamed of it is.”
I was poor growing up, was poor raising 3 kids, and I am poor again as a 100% Disabled Veteran with Brain Cancer. I am not ashamed of any of these circumstances. I am saddened by the people who I have to associate with who continually focus on money over people, money over love, money over God, money over life, basically money over all things!
3. “He that is of the opinion money will do everything may well be suspected of doing everything for money.”
4. “Rather go to bed without dinner than to rise in debt.”
5. “An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.”
– I tell my kids (all 3 are College students and one is even accepted to Harvard Law School) that NO one can EVER take away your education, but that Wisdom is more important than degrees or book “Knowledge.”
What’s the difference you might ask between Knowledge and Wisdom? Well in my humble opinion, Knowledge is “Book Smarts” while Wisdom is knowing how to use your “Smarts” in the World. There are a lot of “Smart People” with PhD, MD, JD, Whatever D (Doctor) behind their names who can’t change a diaper or their car oil, they can’t unclog their own toilet when it overflows (that is just too gross!), or even get along with anyone in their own family. Most sad is that some of these brilliant people are even too smart for God. They feel they simply don’t need Him because they have it covered. You probably know one or twelve of these type of folks, right? In my opinion those “Smart People” aren’t too wise even though they have a nice title and are respected by some for being “Smart.” God still loves ‘em and so do I, but I thank God I can limit my exposure to them when necessary. I thank God He gave me two legs to walk away from “Smart Fools” who are too smart for Him. I pray I never get that “Smart.”
So while Benjamin Franklin’s writings are full of nice quotes that remain good for us 21st century dwellers, I feel we should turn to Wise Solomon for the final answer.
Solomon starts out in the book of Ecclesiastes by saying, “Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher. “Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.” When referring to all the material things of this World. Now as you may or may not know, Solomon was considered to be a VERY Wise Man AND had Riches untold. If he lived today he might be a blend of every “Smart and Rich” person we admire. He would be a Bill Gates, a Warren Buffet and maybe even a Hugh Hefner (he had Harems). He had EVERYTHING the World had to offer, yet he despised it all!
So sure we should save something for later, but we should also know that a vengeful person (ex-spouse, lazy grandchild, or thief) may just wind up with it all in the end anyway. Solomon makes this point clearly in Ecclesiastes. Don’t believe me that people don’t appreciate what they don’t earn? Please take a look at the Welfare system in ANY country to get a glimpse of that reality.
So I basically have decided, like Solomon, to enjoy the three main gifts from God and to be happy Serving God. In Ecclesiastes 24 Solomon writes:
“So I decided there is nothing better than to enjoy food and drink and to find satisfaction in work.” NLV
So save my friends, but also enjoy life (your food, your drink, and find satisfaction in your work IN MODERATION!). I also suggest that we Love God and our Neighbors with all our heart and with a Reckless abandon unequaled on Earth and approaching the Heaven-levels. I know that will please our Creator and be helpful to others while we are on Earth.
Love God and Help People,