Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Money, Money, Money!

Wouldn't we all like to have more of it rather than less? Money, that is. There's a wonderful passage in Proverbs (30:7-9) that says the following :

Two things I asked of You,
Do not refuse me before I die:
8Keep deception and lies far from me,
Give me neither poverty nor riches;
Feed me with the food that is my portion,
9That I not be full and deny You and say, "Who is the LORD?"
Or that I not be in want and steal,
And profane the name of my God.

That pretty much sums it up, doesn't it? We are echoing this in the Lord's Prayer when we ask for our daily bread. The Lord showed us this graphically when he gave manna to the Israelites--enough for a day on normal days; enough for two days when the following day was the Sabbath.

Money is often a touchy subject, but it seems especially so now. January is always a tight month, coming on the heels of our wildly extravagant American Christmas celebrations; in addition, we're all concerned about the economy.

I thought a little series on budgeting might be timely; I'm intending more to walk through how my little family does the whole budgeting thing--perhaps with insight from Carrie as to how her family does it. You can find all the spreadsheets, formulas, ratios, investment strategies, and the like online or by talking to those in the financial world. We won't be duplicating that here. Instead, we'll just walk you through some of our own day-to-day decisions and strategies so you can see some real world pictures of the various ideas out there.

Our featured resource is a WONDERFUL book that everyone should read: The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey (I couldn't figure out how to link the image in the margin to his website, so the margin image is linked to amazon...). Our dad gave Carrie and me each a copy of this a few years ago. Thanks to that book, my husband and I were debt free (excluding our mortgage and a lingering school loan) by the time he graduated from graduate school. We've acquired more debt and are working once again to pay it off (namely, our car and those same lingering school loans). Once you (and your husband) agree to live within your means, then you can work hard towards that goal (Dave R would say "gazelle intensity!"). Couponing, investing, biking to work, etc. will mean nothing unless you are actually working towards a real goal. Make your strategies and sacrifices count!

Above all, remember that our ultimate goal is to glorify the Lord. He is the source of all that we have and will always provide for his children. I'll end with another verse from Proverbs, one that is no doubt much more well known (3:5-6):

5Trust in the LORD with all your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding.
6In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight.

1 comment:

Alicia said...

Thank you! That quote is so perfect!