Col 3:23-24 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, 24 since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.
One of the biggest steps in creating financial stability is to learn to work hard. I don’t mean physically working hard, but as the Bible says whatever you do, do it will all of your heart. While hard work alone is no guarantee of financial stability lack or of a good work ethic will almost certainly lead to instability.
Prov 22:7 The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender.
If you are in debt you are serving someone else. While the Bible does not specifically prohibit debt, it does warn against it in many ways. We can not live long spending more than we make, we are not congress.
Prov 6:6 Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise. Without having any chief, officer, or ruler, she prepares her bread in summer and gathers her food in harvest. How long will you lie there, O sluggard? When will you arise from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man.
The ant prepares for tough times. We must know that emergencies come up, bad things happen and we need to be able to prepare for them. If we are not spending less than we make we will never be able to prepare for our own emergencies let alone help others with theirs.
Deut 15:10 – Give generously to them and do so without a grudging heart; then because of this the LORD your God will bless you in all your work and in everything you put your hand to.
There are so many passages of scripture that call us to give generously that I can’t go into them all here. But we are not called to a specific amount or percent but to give generously, cheerfully, and as you have decided in your heart. If you are reading this then you are incredibly blessed and while the world wants to talk a lot about privilege the Bible does talk about grace and reminds us that as we have been freely given to we should freely give. We should be a people marked by generosity because it is a proof of our faith. (2 Cor 8)
Depending on where you are from, stewardship either means taking care of the earth or the campaign you run to build a new church building. Stewardship is the management of resources that do not belong to you. Financial managers, people who have power of attorney, even employees are all tasked with managing things that they don’t own.
Christians understand, we are bought with a price and we are not our own. (1 Cor 6:19-220) Christ purchased us with is own blood and he has blessed us with the ability to gain wealth. Wealth that is not our own, but his and we should use it to honor him.
There are few places we completely miss it on the call to stewardship:
Stewardship is a call to all of us, to be wise with our money and sacrifice “more” so others do not have to do without. Apart from all the political excuses, it is a shame that we have large expensive buildings and homes while people go hungry.
Ben Hardy again challenges us to change our routine so we can change our outcomes. I am also downloading his checklist of most effective techniques to see how effective they are. Anyone up to the challence with me?
Being a good steward of your time means finding ways to do things better. This article by Benjamin P. Hardy has some great information on getting the most out of your time.
According to Paul’s commands to the Corinthians giving and stewardship intentional.
Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. – 2 Cor 9:7
We must give as we have decided. Deciding is an intentional processes. We are to think about our giving before it comes time to give. The Bible doesn’t leave us with the option to look at how much money we have when it’s offering time. This is one of the reasons stewardship principles should be part of church teachings about money. If we are not able to handle our money we will not be able to be intentional in our giving. We will be thrown by the winds of our personal economic challenges.
In just the previous chapter Paul gives further instruction on giving. He tells the Corinthian church how to give to the family of God in Macedonia. He is clear that they are not to give more than they can afford, necessarily. But to give as a means of fairness.
For if the readiness is there, it is acceptable according to what a person has, not according to what he does not have. For I do not mean that others should be eased and you burdened, but that as a matter of fairness your abundance at the present time should supply their need, so that their abundance may supply your need, that there may be fairness.
How do you know if you are burdening yourself? How can you know what you can give cheerfully if you have no idea where you stand financially? You can’t! God calls us to be good stewards of the gifts God has given us; our time, money and talent. We are called to give them away generously so that our brothers and sisters will not be in need. If we don’t bother to take care of those things, we will not have them when we are called to give them away.
Good stewardship is intentional it is not something you can do last minute, it is something to be thought about ahead of time. It is why this site tries to walk the balance between practical personal finance tips and examining the biblical call to steward our gifts well.
Has anyone ever asked you for directions and you were too embarrassed to admit you don’t know? So much in fact, that you tried to tell them where to go regardless? Just to save your face? That’s what most career advice feels like these days.
Over at Fee Niklas Goeke writes a great article about current career advice. This hits me at just the right time because I have examining what I need to do in my career to be a good steward of my talents. A lot of the surface career advice I have seen follows the same line, “Follow your passion.” Is if people with a passion need to be told to follow it. My problem is I have too many not-quite-passions, none of which will pay what my current job pays. I love Niklas’ idea that passion comes from becoming good at what you do, whatever it is.
He also lays out what he calls the dip, the point in your journey where the return seems to drop for your effort. In retrospect I have probably quit in the dip in several areas of life. I think many of us need to be encouraged to push through those hard times by counting the cost of any decision and determining that the outcome is worth the effort. A good read.
HT to: http://ift.tt/2j6xBpE
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The three marriages most of will face, hopefully, they will be with the same people. Here they are with survival tips…
For the majority, this is what we think about as a traditional marriage. It is the first of our three marriages. We are young, single, perhaps no kids and we find the person we want to spend the rest of our lives with. If you are married you know that first year of marriage can be rough. If you aren’t married yet, have not doubt, adjusting to your new life as one can be rough.
This will be your first marriage. Determine how you will decide on the little things that shape the way your family will operate for the coming years.
Kids; Nothing will throw off your marriage like kids. The two of you are no longer the only members of your family. I still believe you should be the center, but it will look differently than it did in your “First marriage”. I say that your relationship should be the center because if you aren’t intentional about maintaining your relationship with your spouse your may not make it to the last of your three marriages.
Of course I know that some people have marriage one and two at the same time and God bless you, I have no idea how you make it work. I have asked for a friend, who has a great marriage like this, to write something on that but haven’t heard back from him yet.
I have seen many strong marriages completely fall apart when the kids leave the house. Parents suddenly look at one another and realize they are more than parents. This may be the toughest of the three marriages because of the many transitions happening at once. Of course, I am speaking to this only from an outside perspective. My wife and I are in our second marriage and have years before we hit this phase.
What other obstacles or tips do you have for these various marriages?
Many of us get carried away with the “Christmas spirit” and spend more than we intended to. Maybe this is even done with the best intentions, we love the people we are buying for and we want to bless them but there are smart ways to do it and not so smart ways.
Christmas doesn’t have to be stressful if we plan ahead what steps have you taken or do you want to take in order to be prepared for Christmas next year.
Image by decar66
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Check them out, they were popular for a reason
LastPass survivor Checklist – This article was about creating a survior checklist for your spouse in the event of your death. I assume anyone reading this site is, like me, the one who primarily takes care of the money. This process will deliver all of your passwords to my wife after I die so she has one last thing on her plate.
Contentment – The how of happiness – This article looks at Paul’s call to contentment in a Christian’s life.
How money minded people are throwing money away – I wanted to look at some of the some of the common advice from personal finance bloggers and see how bad they are
Rich young Ruler – A look at my personal views on Jesus parable of the Rich young ruler
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