This is a far worse reaction to Christmas than a Starbucks red cup.
Scrooge loves money because he thinks it keeps him safe. He is a fearful man and money protects him from the world. Oddly, there are not-really-Christians who claim that people should give (especially to them) so that they can have more money.
I have no doubt that God can bless us financially if we give to God. I have seen it happen, but God and giving are not an investment scheme. He sees our heart and knows that the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. God sees that few rich people are saved from evil, because money is so seductive. Simultaneously, the people I have known most free of money, most giving, were wealthy and some of the people consumed with the lust for money were poor.
Loving money cannot make us happy, cannot keep us safe, and can be a curse as easily as a blessing. Oddly, money used wisely can make happiness, can create more safety and can multiply jollification. How?
When we use money to bless a community, we are blessed by blessing other people. We almost surely will have less money, but we will have created a community by our wise giving that blesses us. A person can own money, but only a person in a community can be happy or blessed. Money cannot create a community, but money can create the space in which community flourishes.
Scrooge begins to provide “Christmas cheer” to the needy, helps little Tim get well, and makes the workplace better for Bob Cratchitt. He is willing to take time “off” for a party with his family and that too is a gift! The result is that Scrooge gains physical life! He would have been dead in a year from his griping, miserable existence. His giving provides a new lease on life. When he dies, as die he must, he will be ready and honored in his time. No man can ask for more.
At the end of The Christmas Carol, Scrooge has given away a great deal of money, there are many back payments in his giving, and he does not make a dime. He has less money at the end of the story than at the start, but Scrooge does have something. The old miser is the new jolly man and has friends, a restored family, and much jollification. Most of all, he has returned to church where he experiences healing.
We are blessed when we give, but the best blessings are not money or giving money would be a foolish idea. We usually give money and end up with less money! Instead we give because it is blessed . . . and when we give we are blessed . . . every one.
*Based on a stewardship talk I was asked to give at Saint Paul Orthodox Church.