Know when to stop

“Do not toil to acquire wealth; be discerning enough to desist.”

Greed has no bounds. The danger of desiring to be rich is that there might never come a time when you’ll feel rich enough. And so you’ll be forever toiling with all the anxiety and stress such toil entails. Not to mention that being obsessed with becoming rich can destroy your relationships and your health. “Keep your life free from love of money,” because greed can consume you. It can even kill you.

So know when to stop. Agur (see Proverbs 30) had discernment; he prayed, “Give me neither poverty or riches.” Paul too had discernment; he said, “Having food and clothing, let us be content.” (1 Timothy 6:8)

Do we exercise discernment when it comes to acquiring wealth? Do we know when to stop?

Lord, help me not to be greedy for wealth. Help me know when to stop. Amen.

A Little Greed?

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“So how do you beat laziness? Once again, the answer is a little greed… Without that little greed, the desire to have something better, progress is not made… So whenever you find yourself avoiding something you know you should be doing, then the only thing to ask yourself is, “What’s in it for me?” Be a little greedy. It’s the best cure for laziness.”

(Robert T. Kiyosaki)

Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad, Poor Dad is a bestseller – and for good reason. It offers a lot of common sense, practical advice on how to get rich, which many people find helpful. The quote above tells us what he thinks could motivate a person to overcome his or her laziness: a little greed. To be fair, he is not advocating excessive greed. But maybe his use of the word “greed” is ill-advised; what he probably means is simply the desire to improve one’s lot in life, which in and of itself isn’t wrong. Be that as it may, I still feel uneasy with his use of the word “greed,” little or otherwise.

Jesus, on the other hand, is unequivocal in his stand against greed. In Luke 12:15 he says, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” It seems he doesn’t distinguish between little or much greed. Greed is greed! And if greed is what Kiyosaki is really advocating, then I’ll have to demur on this particular point. Having said that, I still think his book deserves to be the bestseller that it is.