UNPACK this

What Would You Do With $125 Million?

Published on June 28, 2017 | By

Derek Carr is my favorite NFL quarterback, and my “keeper” in Fantasy Football. I interviewed him on the UNPACKIN’ it radio show a few years ago while he was at Fresno State, and I’ve loved watching his career take off with the Oakland Raiders. 

He recently signed a $125 million extension that makes him the highest-paid player in the league at $25 million per season. Although many athletes have no idea how to handle this kind of money, and often go bankrupt by wasting it all on cars and jewelry, Carr seems to have developed solid principles on how to view money. He told CBS Sports, “The first thing I’ll do is pay my tithe like I have since I was in college...that won’t change. I’ll do that.”

Carr went on to say, “I’ll probably get my wife something nice, you know, even though she begs me not to…the exciting thing for me money-wise, honestly, is that this money is going to help a lot of people. "I’m very thankful to have it, that it’s in our hands, because it’s going to help people, not only in this country, but a lot of countries around the world.”

What a great perspective to have as a highly paid quarterback, and I hope he does use his money for tremendous good.

With that said, however, I know we can easily hear his comments and wonder why anyone should even earn that kind of money, and think that he, of course, should use it to help others. But, we shouldn't believe that only millionaires and billionaires are required to be givers. Instead of only expecting the wealthy to give because they have “plenty” of leftovers, we have to embrace our own opportunities to give - no matter how much we have in our bank account.

As followers of Jesus, giving is a key principle to our life of faith. It's not so much about an amount or percentage that we give away, but a response of the heart. By reflecting on God’s goodness and faithfulness, and the many blessings He’s allowed us to enjoy, we can joyfully give back to His work and bless others. Recognizing that all we have is from Him anyway, we can excitedly look for opportunities to have open hands and a generous heart.

The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 9:6-8 (NLT), "Remember this—a farmer who plants only a few seeds will get a small crop. But the one who plants generously will get a generous crop. You must each decide in your heart how much to give.

"And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. For God loves a person who gives cheerfully. And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others.”

When we obey and live a life committed to Jesus, and realize all He's done on the cross, we are more likely to think of ways to give money away...and less about holding onto it.

Today, let’s ask God what He wants us to give and where He wants us to give it, and trust in His continued provision. Let’s enjoy the freedom and blessing that comes from an open heart...and an open wallet. I’m Bryce Johnson and you can unpack that!

PRAYER: Heavenly Father, I pray You would help me to give cheerfully and not out of obligation or pressure. I pray I would remember that all I have is from You and it’s a joy to give it back. I pray I wouldn’t hold on to money so tightly or view it so selfishly, but instead be extremely generous. I pray this in Jesus’ name, Amen.

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