As I moved from the student world to the "real world," I've been the influence of money a lot more. Recently, my classmates and I were in one of those lovely all-day seminars (on a Saturday, no less) for school. It was about non-profit business management, as many psychologists go on to run non-profits. As we all know, money is essential for living in today's time. I find that unfortunately because it moves our focus off the truly important pursuits.
Anyway, I've been struggling a lot recently with the influence of money and when it is legitimate (and necessary) to have earning money be a priority. I have always thought it needs to be something to be considered, but should not be at the top of a priority list. I always thought companies were interested in bettering the world and making better products (i.e. a computer company's main goal should be to make a better computer with making more money a nice benefit from that). However, our speaker emphasized that the difference between for-profit and not-for-profit businesses is just that: The former's primary goal is to make money.
I cannot wrap my mind around that. While basically the purpose of all of my jobs has been to make money, it was also a means to an end--to get myself through school, for instance. That feels different than creating a career and company out of the pursuit of money. Is there ever a time that is okay and acceptable, particularly for a Christian?
I have also been learning that despite the designation of not-for-profit, such organizations have money as a major priority. Granted, some of it is needed to survive. Money is necessary to do good work a lot. But when does raising that money cloud the objective of doing good work? How do we try to maintain proper priorities? I'd love some insights on this...