Those very things we view as prosperity--abundant money, houses, cars, clothes, even jewelry, material possessions--are common and without value to God. They came out of the earth God created, so they are common. I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his descendants begging bread. God said He would supply all our needs, but we have bought the message that our needs often include mansions, luxury cars and fat bank accounts. That message has left us feeling a lack that is not really there. Sometimes our wants become needs in our eyes.
I remember the time, almost ten years ago, when no one in my household was working. Yet during that time, somehow we never went without. We had food on the table and our mortgage and bills were always paid on time. It wasn't because we had a big savings account! I can not tell you how--in the natural--that happened. That is because it wasn't natural. It was supernatural. God always provided. We didn't get rich, we didn't even get ahead. We maintained until we were able to get work again. Man's prosperity is based on earthly things and is driven by lust. Man's prosperity brings no peace. Man's prosperity says "more".
Then Jesus said to His disciples, “Assuredly, I say to you that it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. And again I say to 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.”
On the other hand, God's prosperity is "heavenly minded" and spiritually based. It is what is precious in God's eyes. Having the fruits of the Spirit is prosperity. Those priceless things are peace, joy, self-control, etc: But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. Health, happy and whole children, a loving family are all priceless. If you have any of these things, you have experienced God's prosperity! How many of us can think of wealthy people who lived miserable lives of addiction, depression, drugs, and sometimes even suicide? How many millionaires, when faced with a terminal illness, would trade all their wealth for health and more time.
God's prosperity brings peace in every circumstance. God's prosperity is driven by love....God's love for us and our love and obedience for Him.
There are so many scriptures in God's Word that talk about the rich and about God's provision. But this is my very favorite. Verse 13 is often quoted, but the POWER is in verses 11-12. Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.... and just a little further down in Philippians 4: And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.
I would far rather be healthy, happy and at peace with God's prosperity than rich with the world's wealth. Money is a tool, nothing more. The peace of God, that passes all understanding of our current circumstances is priceless.
My peace I give to you
Not as the world gives do I give to you.
Let not your heart be troubled...
neither let it be afraid.
Philippians 4:11-13 Philippians 4:19