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September 24, 2016

You have probably heard me tell you “clergy pay is okay but the benefits are out of this world” 

I have heard some people say “money is the root of all kinds of evil” This is a misquote of the verse:

For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and in their eagerness to be rich some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains.   I Timothy 6:10

It is not a sin to be wealthy but it is a sin to put wealth above all else. Wealth is often measured in two ways:

  • What is owned or possessed  (often called assets) 

  • What is earned (income/salary or cash flow)

Did you know that a recent survey showed that many Canadians have a debt factor of 1.67 or for every $1 earned they owe on average $1.67?

Lets look at the terms of wealth and then see the true riches


Canadian households have many items. Furniture, appliances, dishes, televisions, computers, smart phones, cars etc… These possessions carry a twofold problem. First, we think that our value is based on the value of these possessions. The more we have the more respected we become. Second, the amount of possessions we have is not necessarily the amount we own. As stated earlier, the average Canadian household owes more than they earn. At some point those things will be repossessed by the one who is owed payment. There are whole tv series based on re-possessing items or items that are sold off due to lack of payment.

Society has become enamoured with things that are tangible. However, take a moment to examine the true assets. Relationships (parent/child, spouse, friendship, and the most important human/God) have no monetary value. You cannot put a price on any of these relationships. Honour or integrity is another invaluable asset. To be known as a trustworthy person or a generous person (in every sense of the word) is immeasurable. The parable of Lazarus and the Rich man exposes a significant human flaw. The rich man was not condemned for having money but for how he behaved when he had the money. The Rich man’s true poverty was his bankrupt heart.

Income/Salary or Cash Flow

The word Salary is derived from the French word Sel or salt. In the ancient times people were paid with salt. You were literally ‘worth your salt’. Often people equate salary with importance or fame. Some baseball players get $100K per plate appearance. This obscene amount of money is equated with being famous. The more you earn the more valuable you are in society.

This is a completely false notion. Our Almighty creator already considers each person as valued and precious in his eyes. We do not earn our value. Instead, we are given our value by the fact that Jesus died for each person. Each moment of every day is an opportunity to give thanks to God for what can never be earned…the salvation of our self. 

To conclude I ask each of you to spend time making an accounting of yourself by writing down your true assets and then adding the true salary to find your true riches.

Let us pray

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