3 Reasons You May Be Living Paycheck to Paycheck

“Honor the Lord with your possessions, and with the firstfruits of all your increase; so your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine.”—Proverbs 3:9-10 (NKJV)

Proverbs is a book replete with principles for profitable living. The concept we see here is pretty straightforward: Give to the Lord and you will always have more than you need. Simple enough! Yet one look around our culture, even our churches, and you will see that contentment is in short supply. Too many people live paycheck to paycheck, always “needing” more. So where is the disconnect? There are three reasons why you may not be living out the truth of this verse. First and most obviously, you may not be giving. Secondly, you may need to look at your definition of “filled.” Lastly, it may just be that you are in a dry season.

Let’s look at the first reason. Perhaps you are not actually giving to the Lord as you should. I grew up in a family in which honoring God with finances was a given. Tithing was assumed and offerings were exciting. More than once I saw my mother give away an entire paycheck to a single mom and then watched as our own needs were met and exceeded. I learned quickly that giving to God was not a scary risk, but an exciting opportunity. Remembering God’s faithfulness to provide when we are faithful to give, we can rest assured that whether time or money, giving to the Lord first is the only way to ever have enough.

Secondly, our definition of “filled” keeps changing. As a young couple with two small children, our modest townhouse seemed utterly confining. I recall thinking, If only we had an actual house with a backyard and a garage. Fast forward a few years and three more children. There I sat in my newly acquired single-family home with a backyard and two-car garage thinking, If only we had a pool and another bathroom. Benjamin Franklin famously declared, “Contentment makes a poor person rich. Discontentment makes a rich person poor.”

Thirdly, you may be in a difficult season where your faith is being grown and stretched. It’s tempting to focus on the present moment in our life instead of the bigger story God is writing. There are mountaintops and valleys, all with their purpose and power. Remember that God’s Word is true. Always check your actions against the principles of Scripture and trust that our God, who never changes, faithfully watches over His Word to perform it.

DIG: Take inventory. Are you giving the Lord the first and best of what you have? Are you struggling to find contentment?

DISCOVER: Look up verses on contentment and trust.

DISPLAY: Memorize and share the verses you have studied. Step out in faith and give to the Lord. For accountability, share this act of obedience with a friend.

About the Author

Lauren Chastain