There is a prison that holds more people than all other prisons combined. There are no grey stone walls or steel bars but it is a prison none the less. This prison holds single mothers who are trying to make enough money to feed and clothe their children. Other inmates are from every walk of life. This prison is the prison of poverty. Poverty is Satan’s curse on humanity, because of sin. In order for Satan to impose poverty, he has to come through doorways that have been opened by individuals. He comes through these open doors and forces his will over humanities will.
Prosperity is God’s will and desire for our lives. But these doorways are roadblocks to God’s will of prosperity for you. God’s word is God’s will. Look at what God said about his will concerning material blessings.
“Beloved, I wish above all things, that you may prosper and be in health, even as your soul prospers.” III John 2
God put prosperity before health when He states His will for His children.
“Let the Lord be magnified which get pleasure when His servants prosper”.
After working with people for over 30 years, regarding their finances, I have discovered FIVE DOORWAYS THAT ALLOW POVERTY IN YOUR LIFE.
1 AN UNTEACHABLE SPIRIT
Proverbs 13:18 says, “Poverty and shame shall be
to him that refuses instruction….”
An unteachable person hears, but does not receive and act on the information given. It’s not that they cannot learn it’s they refuse to be taught.
Nineteen years ago I paid off all my debts and I have not been in debt again since that day. But I talk to people weekly and share with them the seven steps that I used to get out of debt. I also offer the teaching on CD. The people I talk to gladly listen and even agree with what I tell them. But there is no change. They take no actions to free themselves from the Debt Trap.
A teachable person is willing to change once they have been shown a better way. An unteachable person resist change because change is painful. A teachable person knows “You must give up the way things are, in order to have things the way you want them to be.
We were so poor when I was a child that we didn’t go on vacation. Dad would sit us in the car and hold up pictures of what we would have seen, had we the money to go. My mom and dad were good hard working people but no one had taught them how to break the cycle of poverty that was passed down to them by their parents.
Since I was raised in poverty, I was eager for someone to teach me how I could break this cycle of poverty in my life. Once I was exposed to the necessary information I quickly embraced it and allowed it to open my prison of poverty and set me free.
2 LACK OF KNOWLEDGE
Proverbs 24:4 says, “By knowledge shall your chambers be filled with all precious
and pleasant riches”
Knowledge is power over the cycle of poverty. Knowledge is essential to achieve prosperity. Our previous verse IIIJohn2tells us our souls (mind, will, emotions) must prosper before our hands prosper. Knowledge determines how you think, reason, and respond to teaching regarding prosperity.
Proverbs 23:7 says, “As a man thinks in his heart so is he.
The power of God for prosperity seldom rises above man’s thinking.
Poverty mentality manifests in the following manner:
1)It resist thoughts of wealth and abundance.
2)Turns a deaf ear to biblical teachings concerning the accumulation and management of money.
3)Makes excuses for lack, need, and want in their lives.
4)Rejects any ideal that things can change and they can be free from financial insufficiency.
5)Becomes angry at teaching that promises blessings for obedient giving.
In order to prosper you must first break the cycle of poverty thinking. Use these three steps to renew your mind.
1)Recognize poverty thoughts.
2)Destroy poverty thoughts.
3)Replace poverty thoughts with thoughts of prosperity.
These steps seem simple and elementary. But they will lead you out of a poverty mindset into a prosperity mindset.
“Once your mind changes, your money changes”.
Deception means to operate on the wrong information or improper information. A few years ago I was traveling throughKentucky and I stopped and asked direction. I proceeded on my way and ended up going 50 miles in the wrong direction. Because I was deceived. When I was a child Superman was the number one show on television. One day one of my friends watched Superman and after he watched him, he thought he could fly. So he took a bath towel made him a cape and jumped off the house. He quickly learned he could not fly. But by this time he was almost dead. He was deceived.
The apostle Paul wrote a letter to the church in Galatiaand gave them instruction regarding deception. Look at what he wrote, “Be not deceived”.Galations 6:7 He’s talking to them about sowing and reaping or giving and receiving. He told them deception was a decision. Deceit can put you on the wrong road going in the wrong direction or it can kill you.
Many people are deceived when it comes to money.
Matthew 13:22 says, “the deceitfulness of riches choke the word of and takes the power from the word and makes us unfruitful or unproductive.
Satan deceives by lying. John8:44says, “Satan is a liar”
There are three major deceptions when it comes to money and prosperity. All three deceptions are based on Satan’s lies.
TRADITIONAL DECEPTION: This is deception based on thinking that has been handed down from previous generations and accepted without question. Many well meaning religious teachers as well as parents are responsible for this deception. Religion has associated poverty with Godliness. I see this in third world countries and much of theUSin my travels. Nothing is farther from the truth. If poverty made you Godly kids in the ghettos would not be turning to drugs, crime, and gangs in an effort to survive. And to think you cannot prosper because a parent or loved one told you that no one in your family tree has ever prospered are deadly deception.
DOCTRINAL DECEPTION: Most people in Americahave some type of religious background. Tragically they have been taught poverty that is supported by mis-representing scripture taken out of context. Teaching that says; “Money is evil”. The bible does not say money is evil, it says the love of money is evil. (I Timothy 6:10) Another teaching says Jesus was poor so we are to be poor. Jesus had a ministry team of over seventy people. A poor preached could not afford one associate minister, and Jesus had seventy. II Corinthians 8:9 says, “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for our sakes he became poor, (this is talking about the cross) that you through his poverty might become rich”.
EXPERIENTIAL DECEPTION: This is deception that is produced by the experiences of life. Let me explain: When elephants are small, circus trainers will chain them will steel leg irons to keep them confined to a certain area. As the elephant grows the leg irons can be replaced with ropes and wooden stakes. Even though the large elephant could easily break chains as well as ropes, over a period of time, the elephant is convinced that escaping is impossible.
The same thing is true with humanity. The experiences of life confine you. Each negative thought regarding success and prosperity is like a steel bar that is connected to other steel bars until they form a prison of poverty. I am a living witness that you can break out of the prison of poverty. You can reverse the curse and cycle of poverty by uprooting deception and embracing the truth as it is taught in God’s word. God wants you to prosper.
Proverbs 24:33,34 “Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands
“So shall poverty come as one that travails, and want as an armed man”.
A wise man once said, “The only place you find success before work is in the dictionary”. In order to succeed and prosper you have to be willing to work. Not just work but work hard. The majority of people I talk to hate their job. Consequently they don’t put their heart in their work and many drift fromjobto job. They develop a negative attitude toward theirjoband employer. Then they drink coffee, take breaks, and kill time. All these are characteristics of laziness.
One thing that has always amazed me about this great land of opportunity, we know asAmerica. The people who are born here work for people who came here from other countries. Almost all hotels that I stay in are owned by entrepreneurs fromIndia. Most of the construction is done by people fromMexico. It appears that people who have never had a chance at success are willing to work harder than people who were born in the middle of opportunity. Ninety percent of the time the difference in average, mediocre, and success is the work ethic.
People who have an old car and refuse to keep it clean seldom get a new car. People who live in an old house that needs painting, repairing, and needs the grass mowed, seldom get a better house. The reason is laziness.
There’s an old saying, “the early bird gets the worm”.
That is basically what the writer of the proverbs is saying.
A little sleep a little slumber, and poverty and want comes like an armed man.
Everyone on earth has the same amount of time in a day. Twenty four hours, that’s fourteen hundred and forty minutes. You can spend time, waste time, or invest time. But the thing about time you must not forget is it does not wait, and it cannot be reclaimed. Now is the time to begin to move your finances to a new level. Don’t quit thejobyou hate. Work harder there than you have ever worked. In the mean time, educate yourself for a better job. Find a way to start your own business. Set goals and begin to work toward those goals.
Unfinished projects, unread books, and unfulfilled dreams are characteristics of laziness. And only you can change that pattern and break that cycle, because it’s never too late to be great.
Isaiah1:19“If you be willing and obedient, you shall
eat the good of the land”.
It takes more than a willing heart, it takes an obedient
hand to close the door on the cycle of poverty.
For every act of disobedience there is a consequence. For every act of obedience there is a reward.
Many people live in poverty because ofactsof disobedience when it comes to money.
The bible is very clear when it comes to the handling of money. It teaches that the first 10% of ones income should be given to the Lord’s work as a tithe. Malachi 3:10 says “10 Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it. 11 And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the LORD of hosts.
The tithe puts God above ourselves. The tithe says we have conquered our greed and we trust God with our money. Many people look at the tithe as a law they have to keep and they resist it. Others look at the tithe as something that was practiced in the Old Testament and does not apply to us today. Most people who have this attitude never experience real prosperity. I’m not going to condemn anyone for their financial practices. It’s between you and God. But I do want to share with you briefly my personal experience. When I was saved I made $52.00 a week. Now I’ve been saved a long time…smile! When I was told I needed to tithe I rejected it for a few weeks. Finally a good friend of mine showed me from the bible that it was the right thing to do. I remember my first tithe $5.20. Gas was 25 cents a gallon then. So that was more than a tank of gas. God began to bless me financially in a matter of weeks. I have continued that practice all these years and I have never wanted for any good thing in life.
I know God’s word is true and you can take it to the bank.