How many of you have a dumb money story? Dave Ramsey calls this, “Doing stupid with 0’s at the end of it.” Truth is, we all have a story where we screwed up with money.
Pain is not a preferred method of learning for most people, but it is a thorough teacher. It is often the pain of our own experiences that turn us towards considering God’s way of handling money. So before we ever talk about buying into Jesus’ way of handling our money, we have to learn we can trust him.
How we handle our money is a discipleship issue. If we are going to be followers of Jesus, we have to follow how he teaches us to handle our money.
Proverbs 3.5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.
Trusting God with our money is not about what decisions to make, it’s about what path to take.
WISE FINANCIAL PATH
Proverbs 3.9-10 Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the best part of everything you produce. Then he will fill your barns with grain, and your vats will overflow with good wine.
Managing our money doesn’t start with a budget; it starts with a person. Give the first 10% to God as a sign that he is Lord over every part of your life. To start doing this, pick a percentage that you are giving and give it intentionally. Add 1% over time until you get to 10%.
Proverbs 21.20 The wise have wealth and luxury, but fools spend whatever they get.
Proverbs 27.23-27 Know well the condition of your flocks, and give attention to your herds, for riches do not last forever; and does a crown endure to all generations? When the grass is gone and the new growth appears and the vegetation of the mountains is gathered, the lambs will provide your clothing, and the goats the price of a field. There will be enough goats’ milk for your food, for the food of your household and maintenance for your girls.
You may need to lower your standard of living to raise your quality of life.
Tithe – 10-15%
- Save $1000
Proverbs 27.12 A prudent person foresees danger and takes precautions. The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences.
This will help you get ready for that unexpected car repair, water heater mess, or emergency trip.
- Attack Debt
Proverbs 6.1-5 My child, if you have put up security for a friend’s debt or agreed to guarantee the debt of a stranger if you have trapped yourself by your agreement and are caught by what you said follow my advice and save yourself… Save yourself like a gazelle escaping from a hunter, like a bird fleeing from a net.
Many of us try to accumulate in months what it took our parents to accumulate in years. We are used to a standard and think we should try to live life that way before our means would allow us to. This leads to debt and stress. Personal – guilt and shame, Familial – fighting,
Money makes a much better resource than it does a master.
- Build Quality Relationships
Proverbs 11.17 Your own soul is nourished when you are kind, but you destroy yourself when you are cruel
1 Corinthians 15.33 Don’t be fooled by those who say such things, for “bad company corrupts good character.”
You become the people you hang around – the sum of your 5 closest friends. If your friends are helping and mindful of this journey you are on, you will do well! To be successful in changing you need Content, Coaching, and Community. Join a community group to experience this and get traction.
- Live Generously
Proverbs 11.25 The Generous will prosper; those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed.
The value of your life will be determined not by how much you get, but by how much you gave away.
If you want to take a quick inventory of whether you are living generously and trusting in God, evaluate the major things that are in your Calendar and Checkbook. They will tell you your priorities. Aligning your top priorities with God’s heart will help you live a life that glorifies God.
REMEMBER: Luke 16.10-13 “If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities. And if you are untrustworthy about worldly wealth, who will trust you with the true riches of heaven? And if you are not faithful with other people’s things, why should you be trusted with things of your own? “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money.”