Managing Christian Finances And Overcoming Bad Spending Habits
Writer Author Reverend Monita Dukhia
- Fiction No
The PBS nightly news broadcast was on in the background as I worked away on my laptop. The news anchor read the headlines and it sounded like the same old story for the past two months. January jobless report has hit a new low since 1992, with a loss of 600,000 jobs! I groaned heavily in my spirit and looked up from my typing on the computer. Oh no! More people out of work, the economic conditions are getting worse and worse everyday. The news anchor continued, “Employers cut 598,000 jobs in January, as the recession continued to ravage corporate profits and spark massive layoffs. It was the worst month of job losses in 34 years, surpassing the 540,000 job cuts economists were expecting according to a Briefing.com survey.”
Oh goodness! The unemployment rate rose to 7.6% from 7.2% in December, 2008 and the unemployment rate is at its highest since September 1992. There are 2.6 million people have been out of work for at least six months, the largest number of long-term unemployed since 1983. People are losing jobs at an alarming pace and we need a stimulus package as fast as possible. Stimulus package? Corporate bailout? Banks and mortgage companies going under almost every week for months on end and Detroit is dire straits! To top it all off; foreclosures have now become a household term. Once thriving communities are now filled with empty boarded up homes because the families that have once lived can no longer afford their mortgages, so there were forced to move out as the banks repossessed their homes.
How did we get here? As Christians how did we allow ourselves to get in this rather frightful financial position? Were we good stewards? Or did we consistently live beyond our means, hoping that we were going to pay for our lavish lifestyles tomorrow and enjoy the fruits of our labours today? Hmmm…guess what? The time for accountability and good stewardship has arrived!!!! Too many years have gone by with us living beyond our means and believing those who assured us that all was well with the financial system. The false reassurances have caught up with us, and our financial system which just a house of cards that came crashing down; and the casualties of that crash are still piling up!
It is time for Christians to rise up, dust off ourselves, and admit that we have not been good stewards and consistently lived beyond our means. It is time for us to turn to God for He is Jevohah Jireh, Our Provider. He is the one Who gave His Only Begotten Son to die on the cross for us, so that we can have eternal life how much more will He not provide for our temporal everyday needs, if we live according to His ways?
In order for us to repair our broken finances and mend our rather frightful, irresponsible spending habits, we must bring our first fruits to God as outlined in the Book of Malachi:
“Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say,Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings. Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation. Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it. And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the LORD of hosts.” Malachi 3:8-11
We must first honour God with our tithes, and offerings and live within our means! Yes, I know it will be hard at first to give up all those things we have gotten so used to having, that we could ill afford, but we must give them up! We must trust the Lord, and have faith in Him. We must endeavour to daily wake up and trust, praise and thank God for a new day and surrender our lives to Him and He will lead us in all things, including our finances.
Before you spend every dollar, you need to ask yourself,
“Can I give an account of this to the Lord and affirm that with spending this money, I am being a good steward?”
“Do I really need the item I wish to purchase or do I merely want it?”
Dearly Beloved, you ought to weigh your needs carefully against your wants, and only purchase the items/services that you need not those that you want! This will be the first step in managing your finances and controlling your spending habits. If you feel yourself giving into lavish purchases that you could ill afford, then pray that Christ Jesus will give you strength and lead and guide you by His Holy Spirit. Be Blessed.
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