On several recent occasions, I have overheard conversations among people about their investments. Sometimes people share about their investment adviser, and other times they discuss the latest stocks that have performed well. There is certainly nothing wrong with attempting to invest wisely – I do it myself. However, we must remember that the most important things we invest in have nothing to do with money. For Christians, it’s a tragedy if we invest financially, but we fail to invest in the most important ways. Let’s take a look at the most important investments we will ever make…
Invest in the Word of God
“How sweet are Your words to my taste! Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth! From Your precepts I get understanding; Therefore I hate every false way. Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path.” (Psalm 119:103–105, NASB95)
You don’t have to go to seminary in order to appreciate and understand the Bible. We are privileged to live in a time when we have unprecedented tools for studying the Bible and more good, solid Bible translations than ever before in Christian history. No excuses. If you can understand your portfolio, you can understand the Bible. If you can understand football, you can understand the Bible. If you can balance your checkbook, you can study the Bible.
Invest in prayer
“pray without ceasing;” (1 Thessalonians 5:17, NASB95)
Maybe you are thinking, “Well, I can’t just sit around and pray all the time.” That’s certainly true, but how often do you pray?
Invest in your family
“Nevertheless, each individual among you also is to love his own wife even as himself, and the wife must see to it that she respects her husband. Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother (which is the first commandment with a promise), so that it may be well with you, and that you may livelong on the earth. Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” (Ephesians 5:33–6:4, NASB95)
It’s sad to see Christians who are more passionate about their portfolio than their marriage. It’s really tragic. No matter how much wealth we may acquire for our family, the truth is that the the most important investments our families need involve our time, our attention, and our influence.
Invest in your church
“and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.” (Hebrews 10:24–25, NASB95)
Certainly, I believe the Bible teaches that every Christian should tithe to their church, but being invested in the church means far more than our money. Every single Christian can make a difference in their church in some way. In fact, most Christians are capable of making far more of a difference than they ever dreamed.
Invest in the next generation
“But as for you, speak the things which are fitting for sound doctrine. Older men are to be temperate, dignified, sensible, sound in faith, in love, in perseverance. Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored. Likewise urge the young men to be sensible; in all things show yourself to be an example of good deeds, with purity in doctrine, dignified,” (Titus 2:1–7, NASB95)
Certainly all of us who are parents should invest in our children, but I believe we should look even beyond them. There are scores of young adults all around us who crave relationships, models, and mentors. They are far more open than you may think. Many of them are married (or want to be married) but have never seen a healthy marriage. Others are trying to be fathers or mothers, but never had much of a relationship with their own father or mother. Look around and pray. I almost guarantee you that you will find some young adult that you can invest in.
You see, the Bible gives us the best investment advice. It does speak to financial investment and those matters, but it also instructs us in investing for eternity. Every single one of us is investing our time, talent, and treasure. The question is: “How are we investing it?”