For a while the idea of money has been bouncing around in my head—and for a number of reasons: I’ve been trying to come to terms with teachings of the Early Church Fathers and Mothers, which is more likely than not to put those of us in the wealthy modern West on edge; I’ve recently watched through the Netflix docu-series Dirty Money, which brings to the fore the abject evil perpetrated by large companies in the U.S. and abroad, all in the name of fulfilling the interests of investors; I recently read the article by the Christian theologian David Bentley Hart, “Three Cheers for Socialism,” and found it incredible provocative and thought-provoking (wherever you put your fealty in terms of economics, I think this article is a must-read, especially for Americans, who are all too often ignorant of political and economic history); I’m disturbed by the flippancy with which many Christians (including myself) pass over Jesus’s hard sayings about wealth and money, and I’m also continuously perturbed by the multiple, often contradictory voices with which Scripture speaks about wealth and money.
Finally and most importantly, as I seek to love God with all my heart, soul, strength, and mind and to fear him, I’m concerned about the effect of wealth and money on my soul. I want to be in right relation to God and in right relation to wealth. Jesus says to choose your master. If it’s an either/or and not a both/and, I want to be sure that my master is God and not Mammon. Therefore, I hope to submit my soul to God the spiritual practitioner, who as he gains traction in me, will begin to pull all my disordered and broken joints into alignment. I pray that my soul will desire nothing but God and what God deems good and right. I pray that my heart, in attachment to God, may find detachment from money. And I pray that then I will be free to love my neighbor perfectly.
In the coming days and weeks, I’m planning on posting more of my thoughts, research, and insights into money and wealth. I’m trying to experiment with how to create posts that don’t test people’s patience (this is a blog after all), but that are still thoughtful and detailed. I’m thinking I can write short posts on a theme or on a book, and if a number of theme seem like they could make a series, I’ll provide hyperlinks to them all in one place.