A few years ago, I read the book Till Debt Do Us Part by Chinkee Tan. I highly recommend everyone get a copy of this book. For now, I hope my friend will not mind if I quote from his wonderful book:

“Wealth gives people a sense of security. The philosophy behind it is the more money you have, the more secure your future will be. That life will be easier and be more stress-free because you don’t have to worry about money and the things that money can buy.”

Upon reading those lines, I thought, “That really sounds logical.” How many times have we worried about money? How many times did we feel stressed out because of our need to afford a certain standard of living? However, Chinkee is quick to disprove this philosophy:

“Actually, this is a myth. This myth takes many forms. Usually, it takes the form of ‘If I only had a newer car, if I only had a larger house, if I only had another few millions per year, if I only had a new phone, if I only had some better clothes, if I only had a better education.’”

Wealth is important not because of wealth per se. Why we need to be wealthy reveals its true significance.

Wealth is neither right nor wrong

For some, wealth is associated with being evil and corrupt. There is even a common belief that what drives most people to commit crime can be closely associated with this cold, hard resource.

But is accumulation of wealth really a bad thing? If you look at the Bible in Matthew 19:24, it is written: “Again, I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”

If you take this verse to heart literally, you would never want to be rich. But I think what was really meant in that verse is if being prosperous is something that consumes you, then that’s the time when accumulating wealth can turn malicious.

In my opinion, wealth and money are neither right nor wrong. We can compare it to a knife—in the hands of a chef, it is a good tool; but in the hands of a criminal, it wields violence.

Besides, the infamous saying that points to money as the root of all evil has often been misquoted. The correct verse is found in 1 Timothy 6:10: “For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many grieves.”

I sincerely doubt that God wanted us to live a life of hardship and a life of mediocrity. In fact, if you read Deuteronomy 15:4, it says, “However, there should be no poor among you, for in the land the Lord your God is giving you to possess as your inheritance, He will richly bless you.”

So here’s what I’m saying: aspiring for wealth is not bad. In fact, it is important in order to secure the future of your loved ones. But how we acquire our riches and what we do with it speaks a lot about our character. 

In honorable pursuit of wealth

How does one become wealthy? Here are some basic tips that I am sure you’ve heard or read already:

  • spend less than what you earn
  • be disciplined in your money management
  • save – invest – save – invest
  • take (calculated) risks 
  • follow simple common sense in dealing with your finances

Creating our wealth needs passion, dedication, and the right attitude. And you can take comfort in the belief that you are destined to be wealthy.

Don’t doubt my words.

Pick up the Book and read Jeremiah 29:11, which says: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord. “Plans to prosper for you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

Enjoy your quest for wealth, but always be guided by godly and noble reasons. And know where the real source of wealth comes from: “But remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your ancestors, as it is today.” – Deuteronomy 8:18, NIV

Randell Tiongson, RFP

Randell is a best-selling author, columnist, and trainer on personal finance. To read his personal finance blogs, visit www.randelltiongson.com. Follow him at Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram via @randelltiongson.