Growing up, my mom was a high school teacher and my dad was an AT&T accountant. Not only was my mom going to make sure my grades were stellar, but my dad was also going to make sure my finances and spending habits were on point. I believe what I learned from my parents is why I never worry about money. Never! I want to share a few of those lessons with you and hope they help your wallet and worry as we enter into this holiday season.
Don’t spend what you don’t have. I can’t tell you how many times I have walked back and forth, pacing isles with items in my arms, debating whether I can buy it or not. I do this often at Robinson’s Overstock. If you walk in there on a Friday and see me, chances are I am going through this routine. I talk myself out of purchases all the time. I walk around the store with arms full and then as I head to the check-out, I start putting things back. I don’t want to get caught up buying things I can’t afford and this is a discipline that has allowed me to do things with my money that have a greater impact.
Those who love money will never have enough. How meaningless to think that wealth brings true happiness! –Ecclesiastes 5:10
Pay it off! I have never put money on a credit card that I knew I would not be able to pay off at the end of the month. Nearly 40% of Americans have credit card debt, averaging out to nearly $11,000 a household (Nation Credit Data). I can’t image the stress and burden this puts on families. God doesn’t want us to live this way!
Owe nothing to anyone—except for your obligation to love one another. If you love your neighbor, you will fulfill the requirements of God’s law. –Romans 13:8
…so the borrower is servant to the lender. –Proverbs 22:7b
If paying off your debt quickly is not a habit for you, begin paying it off today! If you aren’t disciplined enough to only buy what you can afford, burn your credit cards. It’s fall; a great time for fires.
Invest wisely. For a long time now, I have invested every month. In the beginning, I wasn’t able to invest much, but even if it was only $20 going into my Roth IRA, I was putting $20 into that sucker. This is another discipline that doesn’t come easy. It is one that we have to work toward, but it is possible!
Wealth from get-rich-quick schemes quickly disappears; wealth from hard work grows over time. –Proverbs 13:11
Good people leave an inheritance to their grandchildren, but the sinner’s wealth passes to the godly. –Proverbs 13:22
God blesses preparedness, but don’t chase money and allow it to become an idol. The writer of Hebrews nailed it in verse 13:5 when he wrote, “Don’t love money; be satisfied with what you have. For God has said, ‘I will never fail you. I will never abandon you.'” When we love money, we lose contentment and joy, the very things we’re trying to achieve.
There is no doubt that it was work in the beginning, but now it is simply an overflow of my heart. Often times in April, when my father does my taxes, I am amazed at how much I was able to give. My dad and I laugh sometimes because it’s like, “Where did all this come from?” It comes from a God who provides, Jehovah Jireh, my God who never leaves me. I pray that if you have not already, that you come to know the Lord in this way, that He provides, not to fill our pockets, but the ability to give more out of what has been given.
As we prepare to gather again this Sunday, November 12, let’s sing these songs and make them our anthem this week!