Read Proverbs 3
Focus on verse 9-10
Few places in the world offer the kind of opportunity for material wealth and prosperity that can be found in America. The pursuit of the American dream is a path that many spend their entire life chasing. Countless thousands have come to the shores of America in hopes of capturing the American dream…some think they have found it…the rest continue the search…but only a few truly find it. Surprisingly, they find it when they learn to honor the Lord with whatever they have been blessed with.
How does one know when he or she has accumulated enough wealth to be fulfilled? How does one define prosperity? I have heard it said that by world standards if one owns two pair of shoes, one should consider oneself wealthy. Most of the people in my circles own at least half a dozen pairs of shoes, yet I highly doubt they would consider themselves overly wealthy. A person considered wealthy in a third world country would likely feel destitute in parts of California. At the same time some who may consider themselves relatively poor in those same parts of California would be considered filthy rich in poorer parts of the world. All that to establish that wealth by human standards is relative.
True wealth and prosperity is measured not as much by how much material stuff we can collect, but by how we honor the Lord with whatever it is we have. This is the truth that is found in today’s reading. “Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine.” (Proverbs 3:9-10) The implication here is that the most practical way to honor the Lord with our wealth is to present Him with our firstfruits.
In the Old Testament this was done through the sacrificial system of bringing a tithe of the produce of the flocks and fields of the people to the priests at the temple who would offer these to the Lord on behalf of the people. To us this sounds superstitious and if we were to attempt to reinstate the sacrificial system it would be nothing more because God never really was all that interested in the blood of bulls and goats. What He has always been, and continues to be, interested in is holding first place in our heart. Interestingly, when He knows that He has that place, He sees to it that our hearts are full, and though there may be times when we may not be considered prosperous by human standards, we will experience wealth and prosperity that those who chase after material things can never know.