The money brought into the temple was not spent for making silver basins, wick trimmers, sprinkling bowls, trumpets or any other articles of gold or silver for the temple of the LORD; it was paid to the workers, who used it to repair the temple. They did not require an accounting from those to whom they gave the money to pay the workers, because they acted with complete honesty. The money from the guilt offerings and sin offerings[c] was not brought into the temple of the LORD; it belonged to the priests. – 2 Kings 12:13-16
Somewhere along the line, we have been taught that money is evil – that it is inherently tainted – but as with all things, it is us that makes them good or evil. When we handle money with integrity and stewardship toward God, it is put to good use. When it becomes the object of our affections, we and it are put to bad use and it is questionable if we are any longer in charge. The example above shows the type of conduct and attitude the people of God should have toward money.
If we approach the subject of money with our children as a matter of the heart and not the pocket, we will equip them for a successful life. If we teach them to master their money with a heart full of love for God, instead of being mastered by a love of money, we prepare them for a life of contentment and gratitude. We can teach them that there is a difference between earning wealth and pursuing riches. The best way to do this is by being good stewards ourselves. In a culture where money is listed as one of the top reasons for troubles in marriages, this can be a hard row to hoe.
Having the relationship with money that we want our children to develop as they grow older will be the toughest challenge for some of us. We can give them Scripture verses, quotes from famous Christians and tell them what is right, but if we aren’t living it, our efforts will fall flat. Whatever your weakness is with money, start working on it because your children are watching; I know because I am still working on it and it is nice to know I am not alone.
Lord, help me to be a good steward. Show me the flaws, misconceptions and weaknesses I have in how I handle money. Work in me an attitude of contentment and gratitude so I can master money instead of it mastering me, and may you begin the same work in my children. Amen.