Poor, yet making many rich; having nothing and yet possessing everything.
2 Corinthians 6:10b (NIV)
You know those get rich quick schemes?
Why would I give them more than a millisecond of thought?
Because I want more?
Because I want the broad road to wealth?
Because the development of character can be a long and arduous journey.
Suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.
Romans 5:3b-4 (NIV).
Yet the world insists, “There’s got to be a better, quicker way!”
At least not if my end game is to acquire the things of eternal value. The things that bring honor and glory to God.
Things that equip me to enrich the lives of others out of the abundance of what I’ve learned through experience.
So Apostle Paul… Poor, yet making many rich. II Corinthians 6:10
In the natural, Paul’s proclamation makes no sense.
If I’m truly poor what could I possibly offer? Maybe a penny or two? Literally. Check my wallet.
You’ll be sorely disappointed. 😏
But if my poverty has developed character, a stronger faith, assurance of God’s provision, I’ve struck it rich.
When the crippled man outside the temple gate called out to Peter and John, begging for money, Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I have I give you.” (Acts 3:6)
Peter gave the man what would make him rich. Truly rich.
He gave him Jesus.
In the name of Jesus Christ and through faith in His power alone, Peter healed the man. Without having acquired one coin more, the man went into the temple courts, walking and jumping and praising God. (vs 8)
And rich were those who witnessed the miracle.
And rich am I for choosing to trust in Almighty God’s limitless provision.
This kind of wealth doesn’t typically come when things are rolling along smoothly, a bank account brimming over.
It comes when the things I’ve put my trust in are ever-so slowly drained from my hands, when the numbers in the credit column dwindles.
Poverty, both tangible and intangible, targets the depth of the soul.
Because of my poverty my character has strengthened, as well as that of my kids…an answer to the prayer of my heart for the past 25 years. (Exhibit A to the left)
Because of my poverty I can offer you what your soul – not your bank account – needs.
There’s nothing more satisfying than communicating with someone who’s facing a struggle I’ve walked and offering true empathy or wise counsel, rather than a pitiful sigh and tongue cluck.
I long for the day when I can contribute money to meet the needs of others. But until then, I’ve struck it rich because the Lord has made me poor for His name’s sake.
How has God allowed you to strike it rich?