You don't have to choose between spirituality and money

As far back as I can remember we always struggled for money.  I was also raised in the Church and thanks to the teachings at home and Church, I never really understood the essence of money.

The messages that I heard from Church was that money is evil and corrupts people. Those messages taught me to fear having loads of it. In fact, I believed as I was taught that to attain a high sense of spirituality I had to forsake and denounce money. But the pastor always wanted his tithes and offerings. Not sure how he thought we were going to give him that when we needed to forsake money.

At Church, we were taught that money is NOT important and that you should rather have Jesus than money.  I dared not ask why I shouldn't have Jesus and money. And I was taught that money is evil.. never mind the fact that the pastor wanted us to tithe. In fact, when it came to tithes and offerings, money was good because God was using me to fulfill His plan for His people on earth. Those were the days when pastors didn't driver Rolls Royce or showed off their "blessings" and they had a "holy look" and so, I believed them.

On the other hand, my mother struggled to make ends meet. And this meant that she was constantly on the edge especially about money. I learned not to ask her for things because she turned my wants into a sermon about how children in Ethiopia were poor and I should be grateful because according to her I had more than enough. This was not always true... I didn't have Dr Martins boots... or barbie dolls to play with.

Anyways...  for a long time, I had a very conflicted relationship with money. I wanted it but I was afraid of it... afraid that it will swallow me and make me it's slave. Like many people who consider themselves to be ‘spiritual’ I considered money to be very ‘unspiritual.

But this was not a path of a balance or truth. Jesus taught about money more than any teacher... an he understood the role that money can play in helping people fulfill their purpose on earth.

Coming into my own spiritual awareness meant that I was coming into a space where I needed to understand things not from a point of fear but freedom because spirituality is all about freedom.

The first thing that I had to deal with was this: money is not the problem. The problem was my own understanding of money, in addition to the rampant greed and fears surrounding money that creates so much suffering and inequality in the world.

Money is not just a tool... it is also a test.

First it's a tool that I can choose to use consciously to serve others (purpose). And it's a test to see where my heart is. If I freely give what I have been generously given... then I am free from the greed and fears that are generally associated with money.

So that means that my personal actions are crucial regarding money. If my attitude is responsible and kind, then that's exactly what money becomes. So the way I choose to use money is ultimately what determines the message I want to send.

So before we bash money, we have to check our intentions and motivations surrounding money.

The desire to make a difference is universal, regardless of one’s faith and tradition. We are all hungry for a sense of meaning and purpose.

We are all concerned with success, but in each case success is always relative to personal goals and objectives. The difference is perspective.

I have met so many spiritual people who serve others through by literally giving fortunes away. The have answered their "why am I here" question.

So if you are on a spiritual path, and you desire to do good you have to let go of those silly ideas that about money. So by embracing the poverty mentality, you are basically denying the extent of your contribution to the world.

This is a time to adopt a new belief that match what you are looking to produce in your life. You cannot want the good that money can give and hate money at the same time.

As Jeff Foster said, life gives so much to us, often more than we need, and we eat and drink and live well and prosper, and, in gratitude for our good fortune, in humility, and out of the understanding of our interdependence, or simply in awe and wonder of things as they are, we give back to life, and life gives back to us, and the flow of prosperity keeps going round and round.

Don't get locked up on the idea that money is evil by how it's been used. Instead, look at how you can change that paradigm and how you use it.

How do you reconcile your spirituality with money?