SERMON TITLE: “Stressed Out about Finances? God Can Help!”
SERMON TEXT: Luke 12:22-34
PREACHER: Rev. Kim James
OCCASION: October 2, 2016, at First UMC
A number of years ago, a woman drove in a limousine to a Burlington Coat Factory store in Ohio and declared she had won the lottery. She announced that she would pay up to $500 for every customer in the store to make their “free” purchase, but she left a riot in her wake. She got everyone’s hopes up, and then disappeared without paying the bill. The customers were so upset that they threw coats all over the floor and some took merchandise without paying—feeling somehow that her announcement entitled them to get their coats for free. The store management had to call in police to calm the situation and keep from losing all their inventory.
Wow! That’s financial stress that no one saw coming! I’m sure Burlington management and employees didn’t go to work that morning expecting that kind of scenario to break loose in their store.
We may not have experienced a wild event quite like that, but many of us have experienced the financial stress that comes at us suddenly with the loss of a job, a health crisis that disables us from working, or an investment that rapidly loses its value. Sometimes those financial problems are short-term, and, with some good decisions and good fortune, they eventually pass. But, for many people, financial stress is a long-term reality that never seems to go away.
Over the past weeks, we’ve talked about activity stress, relationship stress, and health stress. Today, I want us to think about Luke 12, and consider how God can help us with financial stress.