Use the questions below the scripture passage from the Message, Deuteronomy 8: 11-18, to interact with God in prayer about your attitude toward wealth and prosperity, a conversation all of America desperately needs.
Make sure you don’t forget your God, by not keeping his commandments, his rules and regulations that I command you today. Make sure that when you eat and are satisfied, build pleasant houses and settle in, see your herds and flocks flourish and more and more money come in, watch your standard of living going up and up—make sure you don’t become so full of yourself and your things that you forget God, your God,
- Am I satisfied and flourishing? How did that happen?
- If not, who or what am I blaming? Am I jealous of those who have built “pleasant houses” and seem to have “more and more money?”
- Am I full of myself and my things and taking credit for what God has done?
The God who delivered you from Egyptian slavery;
the God who led you through that huge and fearsome wilderness,
those desolate, arid badlands crawling with fiery snakes and scorpions;
- What “slavery” am I under that I need to ask God to deliver me from?
- What huge and fearsome wilderness have I walked through?
- Who do I know who needs help going through desolate badlands right now?
God who gave you water gushing from hard rock;
the God who gave you manna to eat in the wilderness,
something your ancestors had never heard of,
in order to give you a taste of the hard life, to test you
so that you would be prepared to live well in the days ahead of you.
- When and how did God deliver me from a “hard life”?
- What unusual or unexpected gifts has God given me (like water from a rock or manna)?
- Am I grateful for my daily provisions?
If you start thinking to yourselves, “I did all this. And all by myself.
I’m rich. It’s all mine!”—well, think again.
Remember that God, your God, gave you the strength to produce all this wealth
so as to confirm the covenant that he promised to your ancestors—as it is today.
- Do I think of what I have as “all mine”?
- Am I so proud of what I have accomplished that I look down on others who don’t seem to know how to take care of themselves of their families?
- Do I have a covenant with God about how to use what God has blessed me with?