Beliefnet
Words of Hope and Inspiration with Joel and Victoria Osteen

My father grew up during the Great Depression. His family was very poor, and he developed a poverty mindset. In seminary, he was even taught that you had to be poor in order to show that you were really holy. The first church that he pastored made sure that he “stayed holy” by keeping him poor. He and my mother made $115 a week trying to raise five children! One time, they had a guest minister in the church. My parents hosted that man in our house for the whole week. After the Sunday service, a member of the congregation, a successful businessman, came up to my father and handed him a check for $1,000. A thousand dollars back then was like $10,000 today. He said, “Pastor, I want you to have this personally because you’ve had a lot of extra expenses keeping this man in your home.”

But my father had been so programmed with this poverty mentality, this false sense of humility, that he took that check by the very top corner like it was poisonous or something. He said, “Oh no, Brother, I could never keep this for myself. We must put this in the church offering.”

Daddy walked over toward the offering plate and with every step something on the inside said, “Don’t do it. Receive God’s blessings. Receive God’s goodness.” He ignored it and dropped the check into the offering plate. He said when he did, he felt sick to his stomach. He knew deep down inside that he was supposed to have that. Thank God, one day my father broke out of that poverty mindset. He read the scripture in the Psalms, “The Lord takes pleasure in the prosperity of His children.” He began to understand that it brings a smile to God’s face when we live an abundant life, when we prosper in our health, in our relationships and in our finances. He got a new vision. He quit feeling guilty for God’s blessings. He started learning how to receive all that God had for him!

Friend, being poor, broke and defeated doesn’t make you holy. No, when we’re poor and broke and defeated, all that proves is that we’re poor and broke and defeated. Nobody is going to want to serve God because of it. We’re supposed to be examples of what it means to live for the Most High God. We should be so blessed, so prosperous, so kind, so generous, so happy, so peaceful that people want to know what’s different about us. Scripture tells us in John 10:10 that Jesus came to give us abundant life. As believers, we shouldn’t have a poverty mentality. We shouldn’t expect to be broke and defeated. No, we should have an abundant-life mentality! We should expect to walk and live in His blessings.

Today, expect God’s goodness. Expect His blessing. Expect His favor. Open your heart to Him. Be willing to receive. Let His Word transform your thinking, just like my Father did, and set yourself up to live in His abundant blessings in every area of your life!

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