Chapter OneROLLOVER INVESTMENTS
Think about the magazines you are likely to find in a grocery store
line or a bookstore magazine rack. How do magazines like Glamour,
Sports Illustrated, GQ, Maxim, or Cosmopolitan answer the
question, "What is valuable?"
Justify your answers with articles, quotes, pictures, or ads.
Read Luke 12:22-34
Then Jesus said to his disciples: "Therefore I tell you, do not worry
about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will
wear. Life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider
the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn;
yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!
Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? Since you
cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?
"Consider how the lilies grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell
you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.
If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today,
and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe
you, O you of little faith! And do not set your heart on what you will
eat or drink; do not worry about it. For the pagan world runs after all
such things, and your Father knows that you need them. But seek his
kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.
"Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to
give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide
purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven
that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth
destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."
1. Jesus tells his followers not to worry about life's mundane
needs. Look back at the things the magazines consider valuable.
How could valuing these things cause worry?
2. Contrast the magazines' message with Jesus' message.
3. What is valuable according to Jesus' teaching-and do you
think this is a realistic way to live?
4. In what ways are people similar to and different from the
flowers and birds used as Jesus' examples?
5. From Jesus' words and your own experience, how do you
imagine one might gain "treasure in heaven"?
Jesus' final statement, "for where your treasure is, there your
heart will be also," is illustrated well in a story Jesus told to a
Story (adapted from Luke 12)
Daniel Mulligan was an investing genius. In the mid '80s, he joined
a tiny software firm that was about to hit it big. They paid him a
decent salary with great stock options. By the time he cashed them in,
Daniel was a multimillionaire. He continued working as an executive for
the firm, carefully investing and growing his cash.
Sara Mulligan married Daniel just out of college. She stuck with
him through years of seventy-hour workweeks and bore him two beautiful
children-now 15 and 17. Daniel was a good provider, but wasn't
home much. When he was, he spent most of his time on the computer,
surfing sites like investwithme.com. Just like he was doing tonight.
By this time in their life and marriage, Sara didn't mind so much.
She'd lived this way for years, and she was used to it. But tonight was
different. Soon their life together would change. Over the years, Daniel
had made enough money to allow them to live in luxury off the interest.
Next month he would retire, and they could begin living the life they
Sara and Daniel looked forward to traveling, reading, and spending
time with the kids. "As soon as life slows down," they had always
said, "we can care for the poor, visit our families, and do the significant
thing we have always dreamed of." All their lives they had wanted to
become more spiritual people, but the time at work never allowed for it.
Next month would be different.
As usual, Sara went to bed while Daniel was still working on the
computer. Like many other nights, she awoke about 3 A.M. with nobody
at her side. Knowing she'd find her husband asleep at his desk, she
slipped down the stairs to rouse him. Sure enough, she found him
slumped over his computer . but tonight something was different.
When she touched his shoulder, he was cold and his arm fell limp to his
side. His skin was clammy, and he didn't awaken at her voice.
Above his lifeless body, the computer read "disconnected by investwithme.com."
When the paramedic arrived, he told Sara that Daniel had died of
a massive heart attack.
At his memorial service, people lauded his friendly demeanor, business
savvy, and hard work ethic. But that night, at his gravesite, an
angel of God had another adjective that best described him-expressed
as he traced his finger over the tombstone, carefully and
slowly tracing the letters F-O-O-L.
6. What's the sobering point of this story?
7. What characteristics of Daniel or Sara do you recognize in
people you know?
Experts say that the best two indicators of your real priorities are
your checkbook and appointment book or Palm Pilot. If someone
else browsed your calendar and finances, what would they say
your priorities are, and why?
One of Jesus' primary keys to winning at life is getting your priorities
straight. How closely do your real priorities match up with
what you want them to be? How well do they match up with God's