Workaholism is an acceptable sin in our day. We know corporate America loves greed. Things going well at work? Awesome, do 10 percent better next year. More, more, more—that is all.
But then, there’s Jesus. Jesus told a rich guy to sell all of his stuff and give it to the poor. So, what are we to do? In this post, I'll examine the sin of greed, how it plays out as a dad and how you can eliminate it.
We wrote the full eBook 7 Deadly Sins of a Disengaged Dad eBook because there's a lot to cover for each sin. More than we can cram into a series of blog posts. But for now, let's look at greed.
What is greed?
Greed is the inordinate or insatiable longing for unneeded excess, especially for excess wealth, status, power or food. In case you're reading this and don't have loads of money, remember that greed comes for the rich and the poor. You can be poor and be greedy. It’s not the having wealth that’s the problem, it’s the motivation and consuming desire behind the wealth that’s the problem—this can be present in our hearts whether you have money or not.
How does greed show up in a dad’s life?
The disengaged dad says: “I deserve more.”
The disengaged dad is a greedy dad. There are three things the dad who struggles here gets wrong in the life of his home and family.
1. The disengaged dad puts his own needs above his wife and kids.
Jesus said to His disciples in Matthew 16:24, “If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross and follow Me.” What does it mean to take up your cross? Taking up your cross is exactly what godly husbands and fathers do—they understand total commitment. It means sacrificing all your wants and needs.
2. The disengaged dad seeks instant gratification.
What is “instant gratification”? It's getting satisfaction right away. Jesus told His disciples a great reward was coming—in the future. So, how about we stop asking "what's in it for me?" We should serve simply because that is our responsibility. It's not about what we get from the work. The work is the reward.
3. The disengaged dad is always looking for more.
The disengaged dad seeks more. He’s never satisfied with what he has. He cannot confidently say what 1 Corinthians 11:1 says: "Imitate me, as I imitate Christ." Greed will have you constantly thirsty for that next thing. Greed is that elusive desire for "more" where "more" isn't clearly defined. Greed is the lifestyle which constantly seeks and never finds contentment.
You must watch out for greed in your life and guard against it in your home. Part of intentionally discipling your child may mean practicing contentment and modeling it for your kids. What are you teaching your child about success? What's your calendar and where you give your time saying to your kids about the sin of greed?
The disengaged dad says: “I deserve more.”
How can a dad eliminate the sin of greed?
Here’s how you can eliminate the sin of greed:
1. You eliminate greed with contentment.
Learn to be grateful to God for everything. 1 Timothy 6:17-19 says:
Instruct those who are rich in the present age not to be arrogant or to set their hope on the uncertainty of wealth, but on God, who richly provides us with all things to enjoy. Instruct them to do what is good, to be rich in good works, to be generous, willing to share, storing up for themselves a good reserve for the age to come, so that they may take hold of life that is real.
2. You eliminate greed with giving.
Test this. Give. Give something—your time—your money. There is power in the simple act of giving.
3. You eliminate greed by delighting in Jesus. The more we learn to find our worth in Christ, the more we will see greed in our lives. When the Apostle Paul wrote about being content in all things, he wasn’t on some minimalism kick. His eyes were pointed toward Christ.
Paul understood riches and poverty. Which allowed him, by God’s grace, to find contentment in Jesus. If we gain the world, we lose. But if we battle greed with contentment, gratitude, by giving, and by delighting in Christ, we will gain something more lasting than anything the world can provide.
As we put off the sin of greed and coveting, let's learn contentment and delight in our riches in Christ.
Scripture for eliminating greed
But godliness with contentment is a great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with these. But those who want to be rich fall into temptation, a trap, and many foolish and harmful desires, which plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and by craving it, some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains. —1 Timothy 6:6-10
Therefore, put to death what belongs to your worldly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desire, and greed, which is idolatry. —Colossians 3:5
But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you. —Matthew 6:33
Prayer for eliminating greed
God, would you please help me resist the pull of this world and its want for more? Please help me see greed for what it is—sin. Help me find contentment, be grateful and live to worship You. Amen.
All sin kills. What is greed killing in your life? Biblical fatherhood recognizes the sin of greed. Fight greed in your heart. Fight greed in your home. What your child sees in you will be replicated. Be the example that maybe you didn’t have growing up. Be a godly father for your child.
We dig deeper into the 7 Deadly Sins of a Disengaged Dad in the full eBook.
The deadly sin of greed is there for the taking. But, so is God’s grace. You can be a godly father who leads without regrets.
Question > On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being, “Greed? Nope, I’m perfectly content.” and 10 being, “Gordon Gecko was a lightweight, I want MORE.” where would you rank yourself for the sin of greed? If you need to talk, email me or tweet @ManhoodJourney.
This post is part of an ongoing series based on the new eBook 7 Deadly Sins of a Disengaged Dad.