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Neither Poverty Nor Riches

“Two things I asked of You, do not refuse me before I die: Keep deception and lies far from me,

Give me neither poverty nor riches; Feed me with the food that is my portion, That I not be full and deny You and say, ‘Who is the LORD?’ Or that I not be in want and steal, And profane the name of my God.”

Proverbs 30:7-9

I remember the first time I really noticed these verses. They jumped off the page, and I knew God was asking me to make this prayer my own. I was fine with the part that said “Give me neither poverty” but my tongue stumbled on the “nor riches”! Oh, how I wrestled with the words as they became a beacon to reveal hidden sin in my heart!

Greed and envy are subtle enemies, and pervasive in our materialistic culture. “I want…” becomes our refrain, spoken and unspoken, conscious and unconscious. I Timothy 6:6 assures us that “Godliness with contentment is great gain,” but we reply, “I will certainly be content as long as I have everything I want!”

  • Examine your heart, your actions, your thoughts … and your checkbook and credit card statement. Have you slipped, knowingly or unknowingly, into the sins of greed or envy? If so, spend time in prayer and confession.

  • Are you content? Why or why not?

  • Pray the above verses from Proverbs. Your heart may resist; persevere until these words become your own true desire.

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