In the first post on the Prodigal Son, we looked at how he broke the protective covering of family unity and how his actions depicted impatience and desperation.
Text: Luke 15:13
The prodigal son was given money but he was not wealthy. The sudden possession of money was in objection to the law I call the 6 P’s of Wealth.
Lesson 3: Principles, Philosophies, Plans, Practices, Processes, Procedures come before Possessions and Proceeds.
He must have been born when the wealth had already been created, so he did not know the 6 P’s on how the wealth was created. Why? If he knew he how to, he would have increased his assets despite the famine. Boaz and Isaac did in their time.
He hurriedly left home and his master without detailed plans and preparations. That’s a great recipe for disaster.
Most people who work for only salaries can hardly be like their employers or masters because they work for money instead of meaning. You must deliberately seek to know why your employer is rich—his/her philosophies and principles. Understudy his 6 P’s of life and wealth, then you can replicate them in your life.
I learnt part of my style of biblical analysis by listening to Papa Benson Idahosa. My attitude to ministry was gleaned from Bishop Basil Edohasim. I learnt about running schools and dissimulation from Brother Emma Okorie and from Bishop David Oyedepo I learnt how to produce water from rocks.
Many people who retire from oil companies and banks find it difficult to cope after a few years because they did not know the 6 P’s of wealth. Many of those who won lotteries were broke within six years.
Very few businesses in the south-south of Nigeria and most of Africa ever pass from one generation to the other because we want to substitute our University education for the principles of Creating Wealth. Many of these children end up selling the wealth of their fathers instead of building enduring family businesses.
They are not properly taught in our Universities, else, our professors would not be collecting bribes from our students.
Remember that after the father shared his wealth he did not become poor. He used the 6 P’s—he knew—to produce more wealth before the prodigal son returned; that was why he was able to throw a big feast when his lost son came back.
Lesson 4: Don’t be drawn into riotous and wasteful living.
Text: Luke 15:13 (KJV)
There are great differences between a demonstration and a riot. Demonstrations are peaceful, organized, controlled, purposeful, non-destructive, and has a leadership. Riots, on the other hand, might be spontaneous, unplanned, unorganized, violent, destructive, uncoordinated and might just be difficult to control. The prodigal son was making a statement, but it was in a riotous manner; his life after he got his share was all the qualities of a riotous life.
He also lived a wasteful life—he spent his money and possessions on unprofitable things.
Some bitter truths from this lesson include:
1. It is very easy to spend money you have not worked for.
Many of us, pastors, cultivate lifestyles we cannot sustain if we are working for the money ourselves. Each time I am given an honorarium, I never see it as what I deserve. I see it as a trust fund that I must multiply for my grandchildren to see the outcome. Most of the financial gifts I have received in ministry, I have invested very prudently. For more than 4 years now, I have bought land with such monies that today, we have close to forty acres for a tertiary institution.
I went with my friends to preach about 15 years back and we were given some money; they immediately bought electronics with theirs. I published books with mine. I am still making profit from those books; I’m very certain those electronics have expired now.
2. Control your appetite for sex, food, fashion, cars and speed, drinks, etc.
I had a friend who will eat eba (garri), then take cornflakes and top it up with bread. He will open a box of fruit juice, a bottle of malt drink, and yogurt, all, at the same time. He would even sleep and leave some of them. He had several shoes, suits, and very expensive perfumes. Meanwhile, I would save my drinks, freeze my remaining food and take home to my family. I wore only Ankara clothes made in Nigeria and an Aba-made perfume that sold for 450 Naira. I had only 2 pairs of shoes for many years, no pair of suits, and no ties, but I was saving and investing. Today, the story has changed.
3. You cannot be the chief launcher in every program or occasion.
You must not make vows under pressure. Your trading capital must be different from your personal expenses account. I know a brother who lived a riotous giving life without control or regulation. He became broke and his business collapsed. The brethren abandoned him and he ran to hide in another church.
4. You cannot attend every seminar, crusade, funeral, marriage, night vigil, and conference.
As godly and good as they are, find time for yourself, your family, wife, kids, and your business. If you are not doing that, you are living a riotous life.
5. You can not belong to every fellowship group on campus.
You must remember why you are wherever you are. You cannot belong to every good group; you cannot give your time to every call that requests it. We only have so many resources—time, energy, emotions, etc.—to spend and they must be spent wisely.
6. Our Christianity does not have to be riotous.
I discovered, overseas, that churches are not allowed to disturb their neighbourhood with their prayers. Pentecostalism, from our banners to our themes and preaching, has become very riotous and wasteful. You can listen to a whole message and spend 5 hours in church; at the end, it is like a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. We must not run riotous and wasteful churches. The enemies of the church are better organized.
7. Plan for the future from youth.
Don’t spend your youthful life travelling from nation to nation, holidaying, or even preaching without any tangible plan for the future. Live an organized, purposeful, planned, regulated, and profitable life.
Always have the future in view just like the picture below.
Also, take the little pieces of your life to form a great picture like the aboriginal painting I stood on in the picture.
Jesus was a very organized and frugal person. He collected 12 baskets of leftovers. The era of riotous and wasteful life is over in your life in Jesus name amen.
You do not need to agree with what I have written today. Time is always a good witness.
In the next post on the Prodigal Son, we’ll be looking at the lean cows are not far ahead.