Today’s word for May 30, 2011


»Two things I ask of you, LORD;
do not refuse me before I die:
Keep falsehood and lies far from me;
give me neither poverty nor riches,
but give me only my daily bread.
Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you
and say, ‘Who is the LORD?’
Or I may become poor and steal,
and so dishonor the name of my God.
Proverbs 30:7-9

Little has been written about the identity of the oracle called Agur, son of Jakeh. As far as I’m concerned, it is King Solomon himself under a pseudonym, communicating more of the wisdom that God gave him. In any case, the important thing is that this portion is also part of the word of God and as such is “profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” I draw much attention to the analogy or parallelism used here between the falsehood and lies and the two ends of a financial situation. As in all things, the extremes have always been inconvenient, dangerous and bad counselors. Not only financially but in everything we should strive for equilibrium or balance, mainly because balance seeks to harness and combine the best of the two ends to find a “win-win” solution, whereas in extremism one end strengthens its position at the expense of the other end and there is always someone who wins and someone who loses.

The consequences of finding ourselves on either end are catastrophic. Extreme poverty creates the risk of us putting aside our faith in God and becoming wrongdoers because of despair. At the other end, wealth increases the chances that we ignore God and put our hope in riches, something that we have been warned against. As we can see, both sides threaten and undermine our relationship with God, which is unacceptable. Let us always seek to carry out the will of God and not ours. In the case of personal finances, the balance is that we have only our daily bread and not wealth or poverty. Is not this what our Lord Jesus taught us when He gave us the model prayer par excellence, the Lord’s Prayer? Only to God be the glory!

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