Budgets

Managing Money And Possessions

“Every faculty you have, your power of thinking or moving your limbs from moment to moment, is given you by God. If you devoted every moment of your whole life exclusively to His service, you could not give Him anything that was not in a sense His own already.”

C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

What is Stewardship? Well, let’s start off with steward. What is a steward? A steward is one who manages the possessions of another. Stewardship is the commitment of one’s self and possessions to God’s service.

The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it.  Psalm 24:1

Do you really believe this? I do. And God reminds me of that all the time. For example: Every month when it’s time to plan and prepare the next budget, I can be overwhelmed with the responsibility of making it all work. But just then, God reminds me to pray about it first. Before beginning, I stop and pray, “Lord please tell me what you want me to do with this. I don’t want to do anything I’m not supposed to. God, give me the wisdom to know what I need to so I can manage this your way and not mine.”
God wants us to manage what He, Himself owns. All that we think we own like our cars, home, everything in our house, all our money. Yes, ALL of it! It’s all His. So, how does a budget sound now? A budget is only a plan. Good managers plan. Planning is a part of management. Does that take any of your anxiety and worry away? It does for me. All we do is manage. God is the owner. That means we have responsibility but God has the rights. Which also means if He owns it, He can give it and take it away. God will provide if you manage like your supposed to. He will. I know.
Ok, so to start, I want to give you a little help to give you what you need to get started.

1. Pray about it first. Ask God for direction. He’s there for you.

2. Start out by getting a piece of paper. Draw a line down the middle. On one side write down what money comes in and on the other side what money goes out. Does it even out? If not, go back and decide what you can cut back on. Try to get it to equal on both sides.

3. Now here’s the hard part for many. Make sure you tithe (a tenth of your earnings that is designated every time you get paid to go directly to your local church) and save. If not, it won’t work. They are top priority. Now don’t tell me you don’t make enough or don’t have the money. I’ve given those same excuses too, I know. If you have $1, you have 0.10 to give and 0.10 to save. That leaves you still with 0.80 which is 80%. Try to live off of 80% of what you make. Can you do it? Of course you can. I have confidence you will. Think positive. You still have the majority of it to use to live on.

4. After that, make sure you pay your mortgage or rent, pay utilities, have money for food and also transportation. Everything else must come after.

5. Now, pick one category like food and label an envelope and put your food money that you need (that is planned) aside in the envelope. Only use it for food.

Now, let’s start here. Remember tithe, save, house, utilities, food, transportation, and everything else. Equal on both sides. Use an envelope for food or whatever you picked. This will get you going in the right direction. I’ll come back and help again once you do this for a bit. Remember, you can always pray. God will direct you and tell you what to do.

You may say to yourself, “My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.” But remember the Lord your God, for it is He who gives you the ability to produce wealth. Deuteronomy 8:17-18

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