Jesus reminds us that we cannot serve consumerism while at the same time serving God. We have to make a conscious choice. Choosing righteousness and the Kingdom of God means that we must turn away from the altar of consumerism and worship only God.
One way to slay the spirit of consumerism is to purposefully choose to “live simply.” What is “simple living” and how does is break the spirit of consumerism?
Simple living is nothing more and nothing less than living in a way that chooses to be outwardly simple in order to live rich inwardly. It’s making the choice to focus on contentment, spirituality, and relationships rather than consumption, materialism, and self-centeredness.
Living simply is a spiritual discipline that emphasizes the values of our Lord Jesus Christ — time for God and one another, serving one another, sharing with each other. It is living intentionally … or on purpose … giving priority to the life of following Jesus and expressing the Kingdom of God. Simple living is a prophetic witness that challenges the god of this world through “conspicuous non-consumption.”
What changes can you make to live more simply? How does your schedule need to change to make more room (i.e. create margin) for time alone with God, opportunity for fellowship in a small group, etc.? How can you streamline your expenses so that you can tithe to your church, save for irregular expenses, pay cash for your vacation, provide for your family, and give generously to others?
Are you willing to take the necessary steps to break the spirit of consumerism and to serve God only? Will you choose to live with margin — in your time and treasures — in order to live on mission?
God wants us to experience the abundant life he’s promised to those who will follow him as disciple-makers. Two specific pressures keep us from the reward of that kind of life: time and money.
Our agendas are too full of fluff and our bank accounts are stretched too thin. The result is anxiety, stress, worry, and busy-ness. We have no room … no margin … in our agendas or accounts to experience the fullness God intends. What’s worse, we get preoccupied with ourselves and can’t live God’s purpose in the world!
What are we to do? God want’s us to “THRIVE” by living with margin … room in our agendas and accounts … to be free from worry so that we can live for him in our families, church, work, and world. Our current sermon series is presenting some practical ways that you can begin to live with margin so that you can live on mission.
Live With Margin: Goals
- Simplify your spending through practical budgeting
- Give first and save second and live off the rest
- Automate the important: giving and saving
Live With Margin: Steps
- Pray and Fast on Mondays
- Pick up a simple “budget worksheet”
- Commit to a “tithe” in Nov
- Attend the 2 hour finance workshop 23. Nov
- Ask for one-on-one financial counseling
Live On Mission: Goals
- Every family and small group go mission
- Practice generosity as individuals/families and a church
- Make 2014 a Year of “2nds”—Service, Pastor, Church
Live On Mission: Steps
- Organize local and global “on mission” projects
- Establish Thrive Project 2014 for generous giving
- Introduce “Go On Mission” Class Fall 2014