Over my 30 years of ministry, I have learned an elementary truth. People spend their resources on whatever they want to. We are all limited in our time, talent, and treasure. Therefore, it is essential that we make wise decisions on how we spend it.
There are three things to consider when deciding how to spend your resources of time, talent, and treasure.
- What will it cost?
- What is the return of the investment?
- Are you willing to endure the cost of producing the return?
What will it cost?
Everything we do in life has a cost attached to it. Cost is not only a “yes” to something, but it’s also a “no” to something else. Wisdom knows when to say “yes”, and when to say “no”. If you are not wise, things will end up costing you more than you ever imagined and steal the resources you needed for something else.
In order the make these “yes” and “no” calls, it’s crucial to establish priorities for life. Everyone lives with a set of priorities, whether clearly defined or not.
When someone goes through the discipleship path at Reliant, the mentor guides them through the process of setting kingdom priorities to maximize the return on their investment of time, talent, and treasure. Prioritizing allows them to say “yes” to kingdom things and “no” to other things.
Cost is essential in the decision-making process, but it should not be the focus of your final decision.
What is the return on investment?
Every cost will yield a return. Resources are not the goal, but a tool to be used to bring about some return for your investment. This return might be in the form of love, security, sustenance, joy, knowledge, or pleasure, etc. We do this every time we buy goods and services. If we don’t feel the product is worth the investment, we continue shopping until we “find a good deal.”
It’s essential to apply this same principle to the resources of time and talent (i.e., effort) that we have with our treasure. Time is much more valuable than money, yet we don’t take the time to spend it wisely.
For example, if a father chooses to spend all his time at work to gather more resources for his kids while missing out on the life of his kids, has he spent his time wisely? Now obviously, there is a balance to be drawn, but that is the point I’m trying to make.
Are you willing to endure the cost of producing the return?
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:1–2, ESV)
Some might wonder why Jesus, God incarnate, would ever endure the pain and suffering of the cross. From this verse, it is clear He did it “for the joy that was set before him.” The joy of Christ is the salvation of humanity. He was willing to endure the cost of producing the return.
“Your willingness to endure the cost will determine your joy of investment.”Tweet
Most things in life, both spiritual and physical, come with a high cost of endurance. Can you push through the pain to achieve the gain? Endurance is what separates people of success, and people of failure. Some have the endurance to push through, and some give up before they reach their return on investment.
Failure is investing with no return. Resources are simply waisted.
If it is worth it, then push through! There is joy on the other side. If it’s not worth it, say “no” so you can say “yes” to something better.
This topic is an excerpt from Pastor Bill’s sermon entitled “Is it Worth It?”, given at Reliant Church on November 17, 2019. Click here to watch the sermon in its entirety.
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