Clark Howard: On-line shopping scam
Welcome to Financial Freedom God’s Way radio where you begin to learn, apply, and pass on, Bible-based financial principles and applications so that you and your family will not only just survive, but thrive during these very uncertain times.
Hi and welcome everyone, this is Bob Louder from Christian Financial Ministries, and it is an absolute honor to have you with us—it really is.
- first, you are going to discover the first of the two most important financial principles in all of the Bible.
- You will hear yet another consumer tip from Clark Howard, and
- We’ll spend another great “Minute With Maxwell”,
- And we’ll finish up with our question and response time.
This is going to be a great 30 minutes together, again, we’re so glad you are joining us. Now, as we start, please join me for a word of prayer. Father, thank You for meeting with us again today. Please give us ears to hear all that it is you have planned for us, to Your glory, in Jesus’ mighty name, amen.
Did you know that God’s Word contains two key, critical financial principles that you should apply to every economic decision you ever make from now until the time you see Jesus Christ face to face. Today, during our Radio Seminar time, you are going to discover the first, which is the biblical financial principle of wealth.
And as always, remember to prayerfully approach all of our times together with an open mind and an open heart, and simply just pray and ask God, “Lord, please teach me. Please teach me.” Remember, it is not my job to teach you, my friend. And I’m not going to try to tell you what to do. My job is to allow the Holy Spirit to work through all of our times together so that He can show you what’s right for you according to His plan for your life.
Now, recall, it’s important for the Holy Spirit to do the teaching because whatever you are taught tends to stick and shape and reshape your attitudes. When it comes to finances, my guess is that you have been taught well. You’ve just been taught the wrong stuff; you’ve been taught finances based upon the world’s perspective, not God’s perspective. And all that you’ve been taught has shaped your attitudes about money. Now, to prove this point, let’s have an attitude check! OK? We’re going to have an attitude check. Here we go. Let me ask you this: When you hear the word “wealth,” what comes to your mind? If you hear somebody say, “Now there goes a wealth man, or over there, well over there is a wealthy woman” what do you picture in your mind?
- Now, my guess is that most of the time you picture lots of money, fancy cars, big homes, fine clothes and jewelry, and all of the rest, right?
- That’s probably what tends to come to your mind because that’s the way you’ve been trained to see wealth, from the world’s point of view because that’s how the world looks at wealth. Those are worldly concerns. But they are not God’s concerns.
What are God’s Concerns? How does God define wealth?
- To God, wealth is a whole lot more than just all these material things. It can include these worldly things, but it also includes a whole lot more.
- Because, when God talks about wealth, He doesn’t mean just money and just material things. Why? Because one of these days all those things are going to get left behind. God’s concerns are different. How so? Well, Paul said to Timothy in I Timothy 6, he said, now Timothy, remember this…
For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it.
I remember a true story of an American by the name of John D. Rockefeller Senior. About a year or so after old John D senior died (at the time of his death he was reported to be the wealthiest man in the world, not just in the United States, but the wealthiest man in the world) about a year after his death, a reporter from the Wall Street Journal came to see John D. Rockefeller’s accountant. This reporter was doing a story on John D. And he asked the accountant, “Sir, can you help me in my study?” And the accountant said, “Sure, tell me what you need.” The reporter said, “I know that Mr. R was a very, very wealthy man. Can you tell me exactly how much he left when he died?” And the accountant said, “I sure can…he left it all.”
You see, this is what God wants you to remember. It is not how much you had that was important, or what you have that is important, because you’re going to leave every bit of it behind when you go home. It is your attitude about it and what you’re doing with it that’s important to God.
This I believe from God’s Word: if what you are doing with what you have been given is not going to be relevant to God 1000 years from now, should the Lord tarry, if it’s not going to be relevant to God a 1000 years from now, it’s not very relevant to God today.
- You see, according to the Bible, it is not the amount or the value of material things you have, the abundance or the lack of them, that’s really important.
- The Bible says that what is important is your attitude, and how you use these material things—attitude and use, those are what are important to God, not amount or value.
So, if wealth to God means more than just money, and it does, what else does it mean?
- Well, first off would be your salvation. If you prayed and asked Jesus into your heart and life as your personal Lord and savior, He did just that. He came in and you received the free gift of a personal relationship with Jesus that starts now and goes on throughout eternity. Listen, you salvation is part of your God-given wealth.
- So is your physical health.
- your family and friends
- your ability to live in this country and to worship as you please. This is all part of your wealth from God.
- Did you realize that even your work is a gift from God?
- However, if you are one of the many who believe that Monday is the worst day of the week and Friday happens to be the best, then you probably don’t count your work as a gift from God. Right?
- And if that describes you, then you need to remember that it is God who gives you the ability to work and to produce wealth. You see, the ability to produce wealth that is pleasing to God, comes from God. Take a listen to Deuteronomy 8:17-18
You may say to yourself, ‘My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.’ But remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth.
- You see, God is telling you that your work is one of the ways that He chooses to bless you.
- But all too often it’s all too easy to think that work is a punishment. Right? Well, work is not a punishment. God says your work is a reward. It’s part of your fulfillment. It is part of your wealth.
- So, your salvation, friends, family, freedoms, these are some examples of wealth according God’s definition. But there are more—a whole lot more. For example:
- Things like your time, your talent, your abilities, your skills, the ability to cook a meal, visit someone in prison, to visit somebody who is sick or the ability to read a book or drive a car. Are you a husband, a wife? Are you a student or a child?
- This is all a part of your wealth from God. For those of you who can, your ability to sing in the choir or maybe even to play a musical instrument, it’s all part of your wealth from God. You see, it’s a whole lot more than all you happen to have in your purse, or your wallet or your checking and savings accounts. And these are just some—some of the many examples of wealth according to God’s definition. But I think you get the picture here. Right?
Now, as we begin to consider wealth according to God’s definition, what I find is that there is one verse that really stands out—that vers is Proverbs 10:22 which says…,
It’s the blessing of the Lord that brings wealth, and He adds no trouble to it.
- Now this Proverb, my friend, it has a lot of wisdom. Because it says that it is only through the blessing of God that you can have the material things necessary for life and yet not have all the anger, and the worry and frustration and the aggravation and grief and the sorrow, and all the rest of the junk that normally comes with all the material things of this world.
Do you want to know how you can tell right now, for sure, if God is truly in control of your finances and the material areas of your life? Do you really? Well here it is, right from God Himself.
It’s the blessing of the Lord that brings wealth and He adds no trouble to it.
- Now let me ask you, my friend, how do you go to bed at night? Do you go to bed at night with the joy of the Lord in your heart and you wake up the same way?
- Or do you go to bed at night thinking about money: how to make it, how to keep it, how to spend it and maybe even how to keep others from getting it, right? And you wake up the same way?
- You see, if your stuff causes you worry, anger, or frustration, or if you tend to want more and more, or maybe you tend to what somebody else has, then the Bible says that God is not in control, you are. Someone or something else is, but God is not. God knows that there are a lot of Christians would love to have peace in their lives but they are never going to find that peace, that satisfaction, that contentment. Why? Because they have never learned to turn over to God this most basic area of their life. They have never come to understand and appreciate what wealth is according to God’s definition.
Now, one last point before we close: You’ve just seen how God defines wealth. But, do you know how God defines the real danger of wealth? Like you’ve already seen, according to the Bible, it’s not the amount or the value of what you have that is important to God. Oh no. It is not the amount, because my friend, you are responsible to God for whatever you have a dollar or whether you have a million dollars. No, the danger is not the amount that you have.
- Listen; again, the danger is your attitude about whatever you have been given…
Beware, Paul wrote to Tim in Luke 12:15, he said, Beware and be on your guard against every form of greed. For not even when a man has an abundance shall his life consist of his possessions.
- And Paul wrote of another danger, he said in 1 Timothy 6:10, he said, Timothy, beware of the love of money, he says that …
…the love of money is the beginning of many kinds of evil. And some in the pursuit of it have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many a sorrow.
- You see, it wasn’t the money that Paul was concerned about. No, no. It was the love of it. It was the attitude. It is how it’s being used. What you are doing, with what you have, where you are, right now, and your attitude—that is what’s important to God. Not the abundance, not the lack, but your attitude.
- My friend, you need to begin to see through spiritual eyes what you have for so long considered only through worldly eyes. You need to see wealth as God see it. You need to begin to understand how His concerns differ from the world’s concerns. OK?
Well, this has been only our very first look at wealth according to God’s definition. We are going to continue down this road quite a bit as we go through our times together. OK? But right now what I want to do is, I want to stop, take a breath, and go back and review for just a minute.
- Remember, Wealth according to God’s definition—remember what it is? It consists of more than just the material things you may possess…it also includes things like your friends, your family, your health; it includes everything God has ever placed into your spiritual trust account. And remember, it’s more, it is so much more than just dollars and cents.
- And what’s important to God about all that you have been given? Not the amount or the value, but your attitude. To God, what is important is not how much you have but your attitude about whatever it is you’ve been given.
- And what’s the attitude God wants you to have? I mean, if your attitude is so very, very important to God, and it is, well, what’s the attitude God wants you to have? Ah, glad you asked. Because we will discover the answer when we consider the 2nd most important binancial principle in all of God’s Word—next time.
The point today is that if you want to move to spiritually higher ground in your finances, you must first begin to see through spiritual eyes what you have so long only considered only through worldly eyes. You need to understand and apply the key, biblical financial principle of wealth. Remember, wealth according to God’s definition includes so much more than you might imagine, and God owns it all. If His job is the owner, what is your job? The answer ties into the second critical biblical financial principle that we’ll look at that next time…so don’t miss it.
If you’re among the millions of online shoppers waiting for packages to be delivered to your door , there’s a scam you need to know about.
A recent warning from the Better Business Bureau says that scammers are using electronic communications to notify online shoppers that their packages have not been delivered for one reason or another.
Let’s dig a bit deeper for a minute so you can discover how the scam works and strategies from money expert Clark Howard on how you can avoid becoming a victim.
- First, the package delivery text or email ruse is designed to trick you into giving out your personal information. Clark says that these emails are especially effective because they may look completely valid, with all the appropriate logos and website links. They may even have a toll-free number to call with ‘customer service’ people answering the phones with the company name. But it’s all a big ruse!”
On the other hand, you may get a phone call from someone claiming to be from the U.S. Postal Service or another delivery service saying that they tried to deliver an item to you but were unsuccessful.
- If you don’t remember ordering anything, the crook may try to convince you that the package is a gift that was sent to you.
- During a phone call, it may be hard to tell whether this is all real or not because the scammer will usually sound very friendly and polite. But don’t be fooled!
- To “reschedule your delivery,” the crook will ask you to confirm some personal information, which is a ploy to get you to reveal your credit card number, mailing address or other details.
What to do? Clark says you can protect yourself and other from package delivery scams by following this 3-step, simple but foolproof method
- First, go to the Real Website or Call the Company
- “Sign in, and go to your account,”
- Clark says. “If there is truly an urgent message for you from the company, you’ll see it there. Or get the actual customer support number from the true website, and call that number — not the bogus one provided in the email.”
- Step #2, Do Not Click any Links
- The Federal Trade Commission(FTC) says: “If you get an unexpected text message about a package, don’t click on any links.”
- Why? Because scammers may put viruses or malware inside links sent to your inbox or via text message. The FTC says no matter what, “Don’t use the information in the text message.”
- Finally, step #3: Report the Scam
- It may take a little time, but it’s always a good idea to report any scams you run across. Not only is it a protection for you, but it can help other potential victims.
- If you get a phishing text, you can forward it to SPAM (7726), then report it to the FTC at gov/complaint.
Remember: don’t click on any links inside the email. And after you report it, delete it.
The Bottom Line: Never give out your personal information to anyone you don’t know.
Minute with Maxwell
- I really love the fact that I get to share a Minute with Maxwell with you each week. Remember that each time we are with this Christian author, speaker, and coach—during each Minute with Maxwell, you are going to gain insight into a single word—and that insight can really add a great deal of value to you in every area of your walk with the Lord.
- Today’s word is ANGER. Ouch, now here is a word that can describe so many of us as we consider some of what is going on around us in the country. Let’s see what John Maxwell can teach us about the word anger.
- Great word for today from John Maxwell. And we just learned that anger never solves anything. Let me ask you, are you frustrated because you are angry about what’s happening in our country today? Well, there is something you can do besides being angry. I submit you can pray. Why not come join us and others in our community to regularly. Let’s replace anger with prayer.
OK, I can see by the clock on the wall that we have time for a short Q&A. Let’s see, here is a short but powerful question:
Question: Should I give my child an allowance?
Response: Proverbs 3:12 says, “…because the Lord disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in.” I’ve found it’s not wise to teach your children to expect allowances. A better way is to teach them the discipline of working to earn money. The term “allowance” implies something is given rather than earned. If God doesn’t provide us with an allowance, and he doesn’t, then we probably shouldn’t provide allowances to our children. However, if you have a child who demonstrates discipline in handling money and you want to give him or her a gift from time to time, that seems to be to be just fine. The key is to be certain that you’re establishing long-term values in your children that will guide them when they are adults
Wow, that was yet another quick 30 minutes—I’m praying you were blessed by what the Lord gave you—
- You just received some help from Clark Howard on how to avoid the “packagae scams” that are going around.
- During your Minute with Maxwell you heard his thoughts on the word anger, and
- We talked just a bit about children and allowances.
- Recall that we started out by taking a look at the first of the two most important financial principles in all of God’s Word.
- Remember what it is? It’s Wealth according to God’s definition. Wealth that consists of more than just the material things you may possess…it also includes things like your friends, your family, your health; it includes everything God has ever placed into your spiritual trust account.
- What is not important to God is the amount of value of what you have. What is important to God is your attitude and how you use whatever you have been given.
- And what’s the attitude God wants you to have? Ah, glad you asked. Because that’s the second of the two most important financial principles which we will take a look at next time.
- Now, one final important thing for you to know is that you can either relisten to his program or, you can get a transcript of this program by going to our website at christianfinancialministries.org, that’s christianfinancialministries.org and christianfinancial ministries is all spelled out.
- Finally, well finally, let’s close out as we always close out and that’s with a word of prayer. Father God, I thank you for bringing us together today and for each of the days to come to Your glory in Jesus’ Amen.
Have a blessed day, won’t you, and we’ll see you next time for your Financial Freedom God’s Way radio.