Question: "Financial crisis - what's a Christian to do?"
Answer: We have all seen the headlines: multiple bank and business bailouts, rising home foreclosures, jobs lost and firms downsizing, 401ks and IRAs dropping in value, rising utility, grocery, and gasoline prices. What are Christians supposed to do when we’re hit by a national or personal financial crisis?
How we weather a financial storm depends mostly on our attitude about whom the money belongs to in the first place. Do we view our money as ours? Or do we view it as coming from and belonging to God? If we see our income as being from the Lord, it makes it much easier to navigate the turbulent waters of economic downturns and tough financial situations. Whether we lose or make money, it is all His and under His control, and that is a truly freeing concept.
The Lord created all of us with certain talents and gifts which we are to use to not only make a living, but to also help us live our lives in such a way as to bring glory and honor to Him (Romans 12:1-2; 1 Corinthians 6:20). So while we grow up, follow our individual career paths into adulthood, and begin our lives as contributing members of society, making money and accumulating possessions along the way, we are also to serve and worship the Lord with every fiber of our being. We cannot do that if we consider it all ours and not His.
We will always find ourselves serving what we treasure the most, whether it is wealth, power, fame, or the Lord. The Bible shows us that Jesus well knew the lure of money and possessions because during His earthly ministry He actually spoke more on the subject of finances than on heaven and hell combined. Luke 12:15-34 is an excellent passage on the attitude we should have toward our money and possessions and is well worth taking some time to prayerfully read and study.
Our sovereign God placed us on the earth at just this time in history, and these tough economic times come as no surprise to Him. Since He knows every single detail of our lives, down to the exact number of hairs we lost to our hairbrush this morning (Matthew 10:30; Luke 12:7), we can absolutely trust Him to help us through a time of financial crisis. Let us make sure we are living prudently to begin with, staying within our means and not accumulating too much debt, and every day prayerfully entrusting it all to the Lord. Then we can encourage each other with Paul’s words in Philippians 4:19, as he gives glory to God, trusting Him in every situation, “And my God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”