There are a few scams that people really connect to these days, and to their detriment. One of them is that home ownership defines the American dream. Another is that everyone in the U.S. has equal opportunity.
And the third is what’s sometimes called the Prosperity Gospel: that financial rewards are the will of God for Christians. And that’s the one we’re talking about today here at Diva’s place.
Here’s how it goes: God is all powerful and can access His vast storehouse to bring you everything you want, including a heap of abundance. And He will, if you have enough faith, because you’re entitled to it..
Oh, you want proof? Here it is, in the Bible:
With God, all things are possible. Matthew 18:26
If you have faith, nothing will be impossible. Matthew 17:20
Is anything too hard for the Lord? Genesis 18:14
and of course, the Scripture in the image above.
And on and on.
So here’s what I’ve noticed. Many of the non-denominational churches that tout prosperity “theology” are filled with hopeful people whose lives are anything but financially abundant. They give money they can’t afford to maintain lavish lifestyles of their preachers in the hopes that their faith (and their tithe) will prove their love for God and that He’ll turn the key in the lock of that vast storehouse so that riches wash over them. They just have to believe, they think.
But year after year, these people’s bank accounts don’t change, except to dwindle from the funds they provide to their preachers.
Christians aren’t the only ones who think like this. Many new age proponents send out prayer after prayer, affirmation after affirmation in the hope of their own financial abundance. I think it’s sadly misguided and creates much suffering and sadness.
Here’s the truth: Our Higher Power does not believe we are all entitled to be rich. Our faith is not going to make us rich. The Secret won’t create abundance.
We will have the life that we make for ourselves by dint of our good decisions and hard work, as well as by the plan that was laid out for us by our Higher Power.
Some of may have struggles, serious struggles, but that’s something we knew going in and agreed to, even if we have no current conscious memory of it.
Praying for wealth seems useless to me.
Much better to pray for Source’s blessings on the world, for its will to be done, for our own life to be well-lived.
And then accept any blessings that come our way as not entitlements, but the gifts they are.