Having heard the news yesterday (23 August 2016) that Bishop Obinim is currently under investigation for defrauding a man to the tune of GHC 11.6 million under false pretense, it got me thinking about greed. This is because, greed could be the common ground in this story. Hopefully, I’ll talk about ignorance at another time, but for now let me focus on greed. And before I go on, the issue is under investigation and no conclusion has been reached, so I’m not saying that the story is 100% true – but lessons could be learned from it nonetheless.
You see, you can never be satisfied as long as you’re greedy. A greedy person is never satisfied nor happy. You’ll always want more no matter how much you have or earn. You can even be earning GHC 100,000.00 every month but it will still not be enough. Because, “greed” always wants more.
The good news here is that there’s a cure. Contentment is the cure, folks! When John the Baptist was preparing the way for Jesus, multitudes came to him to be baptized. Many groups of people asked him questions and he answered them. And the soldiers who came also asked him, “What shall we do”? John’s response was very clear to them. He said, “Do violence to no man, neither accuse falsely; and be content with your wages”, (Luke 3:14, emphasis mine). Yes, he said that: be content with your wages.
Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy and told him that, “Godliness with contentment is great gain”, (1 Timothy 6:6). He went on to advise him that he should be content with having food and clothes to put on, (1 Timothy 6:8). In the Book of Hebrews, we have been advised as Christians to be “content with such things as ye have”, (Hebrews 13:5). Paul didn’t only preach about contentment but he himself lived by those words. He said, “I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content”, (Philippians 4:11).
To conclude, the Bible isn’t saying that you shouldn’t aspire to be great; nor is it saying that you shouldn’t work hard to earn more. What the Bible is saying that you should be content with what you have while you work toward your goal. And working toward your goal requires hard work, perseverance and patience. Greed doesn’t know these things and that’s the difference. Most importantly, you won’t be taking your possessions with you to the grave, which is why you need to be content and do away with greed.