The book of Ecclesiastes talks about two different approaches to wealth. One will either leave you with riches that can’t come with you when you die or a moment when you lose it all and have nothing to show for the years you spent making it. The other will leave you with gladness of heart, satisfied with the blessings God has given you.
Some people decide that obtaining wealth is their goal. Nothing else matters. They are consumed with how they will make the next buck and they constantly keep an eye on their portfolio. Any hiccup in their strategy causes them tremendous stress because their wealth is in danger. No matter how much they may have accumulated, they never have enough. They either hoard it for fear of losing it and it does no good for the Kingdom of God, or they take too many risks hoping for exponential growth and lose it all. Either way, they come to the end of their life no longer able to accumulate wealth and with nothing stored up for them in eternity.
Everyone comes naked from their mother’s womb, and as everyone comes, so they depart. They can take nothing from their toil that they can carry in their hands. – Ecclesiastes 5:15
Other people see their wealth, however much it may be, as a gift from God. They work hard with the opportunities God has given them. They do not worry about whether they will have enough because they trust God to provide what they need so that they can accomplish His will. (2 Corinthians 9:8) The Kingdom investments they make with their time, talents and money are being stored up for them in heaven. (Matthew 6:19-21) They are thankful for the ability to enjoy God’s provisions rather than obsessing over obtaining wealth on their own.
They seldom reflect on the days of their life, because God keeps them occupied with gladness of heart. – Ecclesiastes 5:20
God is not anti-wealth. He appoints some to be wealthy in order that they can find satisfaction in contributing to His Kingdom. But God is anti-idolatry and wealth can quickly become an idol when obtaining it becomes our focus. The only thing we should be striving for is a closer relationship with our Savior. Everything else will fall into place according to His purpose. Be careful if being rich is your goal. It is a high calling with tremendous responsibility and it can be a slippery slope if you take your eyes off Jesus.
For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. – 1 Timothy 6:10