Money Isn't Everything

Last night my family watched the number one ranking movie of all time, "Citizen Kane." It was filmed in 1941 and was, of course, black and white. It was a deep movie with an eerily true message. The movie was based on the life of one of the wealthiest men in all of history, William Randolph Hearst. The movie pictured him as a man named Charles Foster Kane. The story went through the man's life from the time he was a poor child to when he inherited an unbelievable sum of money. His parents forced him to leave so he could "better himself." The man grew up to be a multi-multi-multi millionaire as he became a newspaper publisher. The movie began at his funeral and went back through his life as group of young men who were trying to learn more about the rich tycoon, were searching vigorously for the reason of Kane's last word, one that made no sense. Kane had had whatever he wanted. He was more wealthy that Rockefeller for his time. He had so much, pride overtook him. He refused to give to anyone but himself and lost his first wife and son because of his infatuation with his own desires. Kane at some point in the movie said, "If I wasn't so very rich I might have been a very good man." How sad, but probably true. He built a $150 million castle for himself (which would now be about like a $2 billion estate) and spent his life buying things for himself... hundreds of $100,000 statues that he bought and never opened just because he could. Someone once asked him, "Mr. Kane, why won't you invest in anything?" His reply was, "I don't invest, I only buy." He bought alright, yet he lost his family. The friends he had were friends only because of the money he owned. He wasn't an evil man, but a miserable one with nothing but stuff all around him. Stuff that wore down and sat in unopened crates.
That movie reminded me of a few verses. Mathew 6:19-21 says, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.  But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." We can try to accumulate all we want but in the end, no matter who you are or how much or little you have, you won't take anything with you when you die. Nothing. No ipads, cars, clothes, favorite jewelry... nothing. If you are a Christian, you won't need any of it! Heaven has everything we need! But you and I can store up treasures in heaven. Instead of buying for ourselves, we can give to those starving and lonely in third-world countries in the name of Jesus. Jesus said in Luke 12:48 "If God has been generous with you, he will expect you to serve him well. But if he has been more than generous, he will expect you to serve him even better."
Mr. Kane or in real life, Mr. Hearst had more than he could have ever known what to do with. He wasted it and when he died, much of his stuff was burned. He thought money would make him happy. It didn't. Only God is the giver of true joy. If you are saved by the blood of Jesus, you can be in danger of your life like friends of mine are in Ethiopia, Africa and still rejoice in Christ. Or you can be in the lap of luxury and still come short of knowing true peace and joy. I encourage you to watch "Citizen Kane." It is a deep movie, but is well worth the effort to keep up. It will remind you that money doesn't last forever and that people are more important that things.


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