Because we don't usually have to depend on God for food, money to buy our next meal, or shelter, we don't feel needy. In fact, we generally think of ourselves as fair independent and capable. Even if we aren't rich, we are "doing just fine."
What is more messed up - that we have so much compared to everyone else, or that we don't think we're rich? That on any given day we might flippantly call ourselves "broke" or "poor"? We are neither of those things. We are rich. Filthy rich.
Robert Murray M'Cheyne was on a Scottish pastor who died at the age of twenty-nine. Although he lives in the early part of the nineteenth century, his words are astoundingly appropriate for today:
I am concerned for the poor but more for you. I know not what Christ will say to you in the great day... I fear there are many hearing me who may know well that they are not Christians because they do not love to give. To give largely and liberally, not grudgingly at all, requires a new heart; an old heart would rather part with its life-blood than its money. Oh my friends! Enjoy your money; make the most of it; give none away; enjoy it quickly for I can tell you, you will be beggars throughout eternity.7
The reality is that, whether we acknowledge our wealth or not, being rich is a serious disadvantage spiritually. As William Wilberforce once said, "Prosperity hardens the heart."
7. Robert Murray M'Cheyne, as quoted in John Piper, Don't Waste Your Life (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2003), 105.