A Miserable Millionaire
Former heavyweight boxing champion George Foreman, in his book God in My Corner, explains how money couldn't buy him happiness. He writes:
Before I met God, my attitude was about as bad as it could get. Even when everything was going well for me, I couldn’t see it. And I didn’t appreciate it. When Muhammad Ali fought me for the heavyweight championship, I received a five-million-dollar paycheck. That purse was an astronomical amount of money in those days, and would be worth many times more than that amount in today’s dollars. No fighters had ever been so well-paid in the history of boxing. You’d think that being a multimillionaire would bring instant joy to my soul.
It didn’t. Because I lost the boxing match, I couldn’t enjoy my money. I had five million dollars in the bank, but couldn’t find pleasure in even one penny of it!
I chose to see the worst in my situation, and my stomach was tied up in knots as a result. My sour attitude caused me to sink into deep depression, even though I was filthy rich. Five million dollars could buy me anything I wanted—except happiness. (George Foreman, God in My Corner,
If Your Money Could Talk
If money could talk, where would it say it had been?
A one-dollar bill met a fifty-dollar bill and said, “Hey, I haven’t seen you around here much. Where have you been?”
The fifty-dollar bill answered, “Oh, I spent some time around casinos and playing the lottery, and then I went on a cruise and made the rounds on the ship. I came back to the
The one-dollar bill said, “You know, same old place—church, church, church.”One day our money will talk because we will give an account to God for what we did with it. Although we can't see inside a person's heart, we can see where his treasure goes. (Kent Crockett, Making Today Count for Eternity, Sisters, OR: Multnomah Publishers, 2001, p. 70)
Millions starving--but she leaves money to a dog
After Leona Helmsley died in August 2007, she left her dog a $12 million trust fund to provide luxurious care until death. Then the dog will be buried next to her in their $1.4 million mausoleum. Her will calls for their new mausoleum to be washed or steam-cleaned at least once a year and has left $3 million to cover the tab.
How Rich Are You?
People living in North America, Europe, and high-income Asia-Pacific countries hold 90% of the world's wealth. If your household assets exceed $61,000 (home equity, cars, retirement, investments) then you are among the richest 10% in the world. You're in the top 1% of global wealth if your assets top $500,000. Half of the earth's adult population, 1.8 billion, has less than 1% of the world's wealth. (U.S. News & World Report, 12/18/06)
Marrying For Money
Robert had never been married and still lived at home with his elderly father. His mother had passed away several years before. Now that his father was sick and near death, he was the sole heir to inherit a fortune. His father told him, "Robert, you're going to be lonely living in this big house by yourself. You need to go find yourself a wife to keep you company."
So, he went to a singles bar, and spotted a woman whose beauty took his breath away. He boldly walked up to her and said, "Right now, I'm just an ordinary man. But a month or two from now, my father will pass away and I'll inherit over 20 million dollars." The woman gladly went home with Robert and he introduced her to his father.
Four days later, she got married and became his stepmother.
Kent Crockett's Sermon Illustrations, www.kentcrockett.com
"Keep a few hundred million at least, because you never know. Things could get really tough." --Ted Turner speaking to 300 fellow philanthropists, In Other Words 11/24/06
The Unlucky Lottery
In December 2002, Jack Whittaker won $314.9 million in the lottery. He opted for the lump-sum payout of $170 million, which was $93 million after taxes. But 5 years later, he seems to have been another victim of “the lottery curse.” Whittaker’s wife has left him, his drug-addicted granddaughter died, his daughter has cancer, and he's struggled with alcohol and gambling. He claims he doesn't have any friends and has been involved in 460 legal actions since hitting the jackpot.
Ironically, Whittaker was a multi-millionaire before winning the lottery. He had built a pipeline business worth $17 million. Even after adding $93 million to that amount, the 59-year-old West Virginian said, "I don't have any friends. Every friend that I've had, practically, has wanted to borrow money or something and, of course, once they borrow money from you, you can't be friends anymore."
Whittaker said, "I'm only going to be remembered as the lunatic who won the lottery. I'm not proud of that. I wanted to be remembered as someone who helped a lot of people." Jack Whittaker bought a Powerball ticket and learned the painful truth that money can’t make anyone happy.
Does She Love Me or my Money?
A wealthy elderly man married a beautiful young woman. Not long afterward, he began to wonder if she married him for his money or love for him. He decided to consult a counselor.
“Doc, my problem is driving me crazy. I need to know if my wife really loves me or if she just married me for my money.”
“The answer is simple,” the counselor explained. “Give away all your money except just enough to live on. If your wife stays, she loves you. If she leaves, she loves your money.”
(Kent Crockett, I Once Was Blind But Now I Squint,
Where Your Treasure Is
If our treasure is in heaven, our hearts will be there. If our investments are on earth, our hearts will be here. Our hearts and treasure are interlocked.
I know a man who invested a considerable amount of money in the stock market. When his stock went up in value, his spirit was high. But when his stock went down, he became depressed. His treasure and heart rode together in the same roler coaster car. He invested his treasure in the stock market and, sure enough, his heart was also invested in it. (Kent Crockett, Making Today Count for Eternity, Sisters, OR: Multnomah Publishers, 2001, p. 71)