The real estate investing world is full of self proclaimed gurus and advisers – people claiming to have the secret to getting rich quick. There’s no shortage of schemes and scams and deals that sound too good to be true – and are. How can you cut through the noise and create a successful – and God centered – investing career?
The Bible speaks often of false prophets. And though the many verses in both Old Testament and New that make mention of those deceivers are referring primarily to evil ones who aim to undermine the faith of believers and steer them into the lair of Satan, the spirit of the false prophet is also alive in the many fraudulent and manipulative c practices of those claiming to have the keys to quick wealth.
Those kinds of “false prophets” may set themselves up as investment counselors who ask clients to turn over all their assets and decision making power to them. Then they disappear without a trace. They might be counselors who offer to take care of a financial or lending issue for you – for a fee of course. And after you’ve paid them, they’re gone.
A false prophet might be one who steers you toward a property he or she has a proprietary interest in. Or one who uses hard sell tactics, exaggerations and pressures to compel you to buy a product or service they’re selling. False prophets might also show up as out and out scammers who make money selling properties they don’t actually own.
These individuals rely on a combination of fast talk, loose facts and pressure to make their money from new and even experienced investors who want to profit with their investments. But Christian investors who follow the advice of King Solomon and the guidance of God can avoid those pitfalls and build wealth for a lifetime.
King Solomon’s recommendations for living a prosperous and blessed life are founded firmly n the virtues of wisdom and prudence. “The Lord giveth wisdom,” he says in Proverbs 2:6,”and out of his mouth cometh prudence and knowledge.” The two go hand in hand to help sort out truth from lies and make the right decisions in any situation.
Armed with prudence and wisdom, the smart investor lets Bible centered principles guide investing decisions. Those principles offer a way to separate the wheat of good investing advice from the chaff of bad or downright fraudulent ones.
Stewardship and service put God’s plan first. Good investing decisions serve the plan and the will of God. Christian investors know that everything belongs to God – and decisions made in ways that serve God’s plan can also bring prosperity.
Does an advisor promising to make everything work for you actually advance God’s overall plan in the world? If that individual’s recommendations hinge on lying, exploiting people or the world, or creating hardship for others, the answer is a resounding no.
Christian investors understand that in investing as in all things, they’re acting as stewards for God. Since God owns everything in the world, we’re simply acting as stewards, like the servants who maintain a manor house while the owner is absent. That means investing from a perspective of service – to God and to others.
Does an advisor or a plan ask you to exploit others or lead to an immoral outcome? Would your participation in a venture give you an unfair advantage? Making decisions with the highest good and service to God in mind can help a Christian investor spot those red warning flags.
A sense of service to others can also help investors make wise decisions and avoid obvious scams and bad advice. Wanting the best for the tenants in your investment property creates a relationship with them that benefits everyone concerned – and weed out bad managers and other service providers who want to cut corners or skip steps.
Investors who bring wisdom and prudence to an investing plan that reflects their relationship with God and His world can see a clear path to prosperity. That’s what Jason Hartman says in his 10 Commandments of Successful Investing – ten guidelines inspired by the Biblical version that remind investors to get wise, be prudent and invest from their own vision.
Prayer, smart thinking and the right investing advice are the tools that help Christian investors recognize the false prophets and their false profits – and open the door to long term investing success. (Featured image: Flickr/ankakay)
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The Solomon Success Team