The more you get, the more you want.
The phrase is pretty common, and it’s even inspired quite a few secular musicians with their song titles.
I’ve come to realize that this is the case for just about anyone who may not have the right perspective of money and possessions. Even the already filthy rich…
Italian actress Sophia Loren, hotel magnate Leslie Helmsley, actor Wesley Snipes, actor and rapper Ja Rule (Jeffrey Atkins), reality TV personalities Joe and Teresa Giudice… They’re all rich (or seemingly rich) people who found themselves in hot water for not paying taxes.
If you’ve been reading Compass – finances God’s way’s blogs throughout the year, then you know what the Bible says about the dangers of loving money.
But those who [are not financially ethical and] crave to get rich [with a compulsive, greedy longing for wealth] fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction [leading to personal misery]. For the love of money [that is, the greedy desire for it and the willingness to gain it unethically] is a root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves [through and through] with many sorrows. (1 Timothy 6:9-10, AMP)
It’s clear that the love of money has a lure that not even many of us who have more than enough can resist.
I’d go so far to say: the more you get, the more you want to keep to yourself.
So, how can we resist being greedy and loving money?
- Focus on loving Christ.
If you love the Lord, you cannot love money, stuff, or anything else at the same time (Matthew 6:24). Because when you love Him, you will be devoted to Him only.
- Give from your money and possessions.
The more you become a giver, the less you’ll be a keeper—and the easier it is to relinquish your love of these things.
As I was researching how common “the more you get, the more you want” is, I came across a quote from the late architect and author Norton Juster: “The more you want, the less you get, and the less you get, the more you have.”
It’s a beautiful reality that even the Bible promises many times over. “Give, and it shall be given unto you, good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over” (Luke 6:38).
- Flee—and pursue what is good.
Purse righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness and gentleness (1 Timothy 6:11, AMP).
Learning to love the Lord, to give and to pursue what is really good doesn’t come overnight. As financial disciples, guess what… You’ll be tempted on a regular basis (maybe even several times a day).
But that’s what the Holy Spirit is here for: to correct, guide and protect us.
The riches on earth are temporary, but the true riches are eternal. If we set our eyes on these things, we’ll find that what we give up… God will replace abundantly.
Melody is the founder of financial coaching business Centsible Finance LLC, which publishes the free e-letter Making Cents. She earned a bachelor’s in public relations from the University of Florida in 2014, and a master’s in global strategic communications from Florida International University in 2017; but she discovered her passion in personal finance and writing, as well as a closer relationship with the Lord, after joining a Compass—Finances God’s Way study in 2020. She now serves as a volunteer on the Compass Florida board, is the editor for the Compass blog, and a facilitator and trainer for financial discipleship studies. Melody and her husband, Nate, live in South Florida.