Bible Reading: Luke 14:1-24
Teach your child how to use the resources that God has given them in such a way that they are a blessing to other people. When they do that…they will receive a blessing themselves from God.
Thoughts about God for My Grandkids:
There is a lot of talk on the news these days about the Stock Market. The term, “Stock Market”, refers to the process of buying and selling of shares of stock in a company. Think of it this way. Imagine a pizza. It costs $12.00. If you and 3 friends all went in together and bought the pizza equally, you would have to pay $3.00 each. It is cut into 12 slices. Each slice is your share of the pizza…and you would each own 3 slices, or 3 shares. Each share is worth $1.00. But wait a minute. You decide to take the pizza home and eat it. As you are going out of the store a man runs up. He says that he is in a big hurry and will buy the pizza from you for $24.00. You talk it over and agree. He pays you the money and leaves. You divide the money up and each of you gets $6.00. That means that the value of the pizza went from $1.00 per share, to $2.00 per share. That is a 100% profit. You doubled your original investment. So, what are you going to do? Well, if it was me…I’d buy another pizza and look for someone else who wants to buy it for more than I paid for it!
Now, imagine a company. It is growing, but does not have enough money to continue to buy the materials that it needs to continue growing. So, the owner decides to take on some Investors. He agrees to sell part of the company. He divides the company into 12 slices (shares)…and sells 4 of them. The company is worth $1,200,000.000. That means that each share is worth $100,000.00. He keeps 6 for himself because each share represents a vote on how to operate the company and if he has the most shares then he has the most votes and he can still keep control of the company. The company begins to make more and more money. Eventually, the company is worth $2,400,000.00. That means that each share is now worth $200,000.00. Wow, the Investors have doubled their money. One of the Investors needs some money to buy a new home. So, he sells his share to someone else. Now, he has the original $100,000.00 that he paid for the share…plus another $100,000.00 that he made because the company grew and became more valuable. That was a great deal.
Sounds easy, doesn’t it? Just buy shares in a company…wait until it makes money and is worth more…and then sell them. That way you will use your money to make more money. But here is the catch…not all companies make money and become more valuable. In fact, some companies loose money and become less valuable. So, while you may have invested $100,000.00 for 1 share…that 1 share may now only be worth $80,000.00, or even less.
So, how do you know which companies to invest in? How do you know what companies are making money, and which ones are losing money? There are organizations that keep a watch on this. For instance, there is: the S&P 500, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, and the NASDAQ. Each of these organizations produce a report called a “market index”. You read their market index and get a summary of what companies are growing, and what companies are losing. Then, you buy and sell stocks in the companies that you think will continue to grow and make more money.
But there is a problem. Sometimes the market indexes are wrong. They think that a company is going to grow and become more valuable, but it doesn’t. And, sometimes things happen around the world that unexpectedly affect the value of companies. Maybe there is a flood, or a strike, or a war, or another company starts producing the materials cheaper than your company. Suddenly, your “sure thing”…the company that you just knew was going to make lots and lots of money…the company that you had spent lots and lots of money on to buy shares…has lost money. Or, worse yet, it has gone under. They have lost everything…including your money!
What if you had a market index that was perfect? It never made a mistake. It knew exactly what was going to happen in the future. It accurately told you which companies were going to make money, how much, and how fast. And, it was never wrong. I would invest all of my money in the companies it recommended.
Here is the bad news. There is no such market index. No one, no organization can predict the future with 100% accuracy.
However, there is one exception. There is one organization that guarantees that if you invest in it…you will earn much, much more than what you invested. What is the name of that organization? The Kingdom of God.
Right about now you are going, “What? Invest in the Kingdom of God? How would you do that? What are you talking about, Granddad?”
Here it is. Jesus said that we can either invest in the things of earth, or the things of Heaven. When you invest in the things of earth…there is no guarantee. But, when you invest in the things of Heaven…you have God’s personal guarantee of His blessings on you. So, how do you invest in the Kingdom of God?
- By investing into people.
- By helping people.
- By doing good things for people.
- By helping people who cannot help themselves.
And, Jesus said that we should do those things for people who cannot do anything for us. In other words, don’t do something for someone…just because you think that they will do something for you, in return. Do something for someone…who cannot do anything for you in return…and then God will do something for you in return. And get this…God will always do more for you, than anyone else will do for you.
Stop and think about it. God has given you His resources (your abilities, your talents, your finances, your time, your love) to use for His purposes. When you do that…He will bless you. Do you get what I am saying? You use God’s resources and He blesses you for using His resources. What a deal! Now, go use God’s resources to accomplish His purpose. Invest in the life of someone who needs help. Then, when you get to Heaven…you will have a huge blessing waiting on you. Be a smart investor.
Love you more than bunches and bunches,