Money….Whose Is It?

“Walk with the wise and become wise,” (Proverbs 13:20).
“Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisors they succeed,” (Proverbs 15:22).

This is my anthem/proverb as a parent of young adult children, one of whom is married and two of which will be getting married in the next 12 months. I tell them all the time, “It is okay if you don’t know. Just go to the person you know that has had much experience and success in the area where you need help/wisdom and simply ask them! Be it a spiritual question, job question, money question, education, etc.”

I want them to, of course, come to me for advice, but also seek the advice of wise people around them. I feel so strongly about this that I wrote about it in my first book, “The Front 9, Making Your Shots Count in Life.” One person doesn’t know everything, and I certainly don’t, but I have learned to go to the most successful people I know in an area and ask them. It has benefited me tremendously. Some of the greatest blessings of my life have involved putting down my pride and simply taking the step to ask. Sometimes it has required me to pay for expert advice but boy was it well worth it.

Last week, we took our sons and one of our future daughters-in-love to hear Dave Ramsey. I was thrilled at their response when I asked them to go. They willingly paid for their tickets plus mine. I consider Dave to be one of our countries experts on teaching people not only how to manage their money, but to follow biblical principles in doing so.

Dave started out the evening by encouraging the audience, especially young adults, to find the OLDEST person they know who has money in the bank. Someone who did not inherit it, but in their lifetime had acquired “financial peace.” He challenged the audience to ask, “How did you get to where you are financially? Meaning.…money in the bank, no debt and financial peace?”

He then shared the answer the audience would pretty much get time and again: They didn’t live on credit. If they could not afford it, they didn’t buy it. They saved 10 percent of their paycheck and they worked well over 40 hours a week for many, many years. He further encouraged young adults to not have a big house payment or a new car payment and to pay off both as quickly as possible. To basically live their lives as free of debt as possible.

Along with all we learned from Dave this past Wednesday, over the weekend, while visiting a church with our oldest son in the Upstate, what do you think the sermon was on? Lessons about money. The sermon title? “How to Win with Money!”

The four points of the message were:

1) Work hard!
Proverbs 14:23, “All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads to poverty.”
2) Save money.
Proverbs 13:11, “Dishonest money dwindles away, but whoever GATHERS [saves] money little by little makes it grow” [emphasis added].
3) Be careful with money.
Proverbs 23:4-5, “Do not wear yourself out to get rich; do not trust your own cleverness. Cast but a glance at riches, and they are gone, for they will surely sprout wings and fly off to the sky like an eagle.”
Proverbs 28:20, “A faithful person will be richly blessed, but one eagerly to get rich will not go unpunished.”
4) Be generous with your money.
Proverbs 22:9, ”The generous will themselves be blessed, for they share their food with the poor.”
Proverbs 11:25, “A generous person will PROSPER; whoever refreshes others WILL BE REFRESHED,” [emphasis added].
Proverbs 13:23, “A good person leaves an inheritance for their children, but a sinner’s wealth is stored up for the righteous person.”

Yes, it is biblical to leave your children and grandchildren a financial inheritance, not just a spiritual one. They go together.

Following are the most recent statistics published from the last five years of study on Americans and their money:

63% of all Americans cannot cover an emergency that would cost $500.00.
56% of Americans have less than $1,000.00 in their combined savings and checking account.
1/3 of all Americans have no savings.
Over 50% of all Americans have $8,400.00 of credit card debt. That doesn’t include things like student loans, car payments or mortgage payments.
Average American home possesses 13 different credit cards.

Now, look at the study of Christians who tithe 10% of their income. This could be described as winning with money–when Christians recognize that God is the owner of their money and they are just managers of it:

80% of Christians who tithe have no credit card debt.
74% have no car payments.
48% own their own homes (no mortgage).
28% of debt free.

………..Only 5% of professing Christians tithe…….

There is much we can learn from the above information. Get wise counsel. Read God’s word and do what it says. Become the manager of your money and not the owner.

God is the owner of all.

Psalm 50:9-11, “I have no need of a bull from your stall or of goats from your pens, for EVERY ANIMAL of the forest is MINE, and the CATTLE on a THOUSAND HILLS. I KNOW every bird in the mountains, and the insects in the fields are MINE” [emphasis added].

God owns it all….and His word is clear. We need to obey it and trust it when it comes to managing His money.

“If a person gets his attitude toward money straight, it will help straighten out almost every other area of his life.” ~Billy Graham

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