Monday, November 19, 2012

Is Prosperity in America a Blessing?

My troubling dilemma:  Black Friday's coming.  Should we buy a new TV?

Why does this decision bother me so much?

We have a big screen TV.  It takes up the majority of our living room, but works fine.

When is it ok to spend money because we can afford it, want it, will enjoy it?  Does God really care about this decision?

I know, I've heard it over and over.  As long as your attitude is right (you use money, without the money using you) God is pleased.

The other answer I've heard: as long as you give your 10% tithe, you can spend the rest however you wish. 

Is it really that simple?

Another quote I heard recently, "The reason God blesses this country financially is to spread His gospel to the the nations."

What I agree with:  God wants us (follower of Jesus) to use our money to share the good news of Jesus with others.

What I'm not sure of:   Is God blessing the U.S. financially, as a whole, for this reason?  Are we really using God's resources to spread His truth?

Other questions:  Why does God bless some believers financially and not others?  What about the evil people in the world that have many riches from their disobedient, God forsaking lives?  Is God blessing them with riches? 

Is prosperity in America a blessing?

Let's look at how the U.S. spends their money.  (I realize I am now throwing believers and nonbelievers in the same pot).

What we spend our money on gives us a good idea of our priorities.

Sex trafficking:  Young girls (hard to know the exact number, maybe 100,000 in U.S.)  as young as 12-14 years old making $200- $1000; 7-15 times a day.  Making money for someone who owns them and doesn't care for them.  (source:

Does God bless America with money for this?

Professional Sports:
"NBA's 'average' salary -- $5.15M -- a trendy, touchy subject" from (Posted Aug 19 2011) Here is the "average player salary" for each of the major U.S. professional team sports, based on a variety of sources using the most recent data available:
NBA: $5.15 million (2010-11)

MLB: $3.34 million (2010)

NHL: $2.4 million (2010-11)

NFL: $1.9 million (2010)

Does God bless America with money for this?

According to (2006), the Average annual expenditures:
Poorest 20%: $17,837
Middle 20%: $36,980
Richest 20%: $83,710
The average American household spends $43,395 a year.
I realize these numbers are not specific, and outdated.  However, they show that no matter what income you have, you spend the same percentage.  The more money you have, the more you spend. 
Does God bless America so people can spend more and more money?  (If it were going directly to His work around the world, maybe.) 
But the church is different, right?  What do you think?  Do we have different priorities? 
All this started from, "Do we need to buy a t.v.?"
I'd love to hear your thoughts! 


  1. Thanks for such a thought provoking post, Stacy. I think we most certainly should have different priorites, but will stop there. Will have to think some more on this one!

    1. I know. My head is still spinning. God wants believers to look radically different from the world. The challenge: Does our finances reflect that?

  2. I agree that it's a tough question. I think that God holds us to a higher standard of financial responsibility, ie: tithes AND offerings; paying bills, saving, staying away from credit cards, and spending responsibly. We've tried to live with this in mind, and while we aren't rich, I KNOW we've been blessed. We don't have a big, flat screen TV, in fact, we bought our living room TV from Edmond Schools for $60! :D There's nothing wrong with buying bigger & better, however, I believe it's important to examine needs, expenses, & even motives before doing so. God delights in us when we are content with what we have. I'm not so sure that prosperity is always a blessing. It's HARD to be happy with what you have. It's HARD to teach your children to be good stewards. It's HARD to value character over financial success. We had to be careful with our money because when we started out we didn't have a lot. But, if we had to do it all over again, I wouldn't change a thing. Our children are adults now, who chose character over status in their spouses, who tithe & give generously, who are committed believers & faithful to their churches, & who spend & save wisely...and I couldn't be more proud. ...and that's all I have to say about that! :D

    1. Thank you for sharing. Amen!

      I'd love to be an OBU mom in the future. I graduated from there in ----. Go with Ka-rip!


I would love to hear your comments.