Financial Victory

Financial Victory 1.19

It’s funny to me that January’s topic happened to be Finances. Though, I guess it really does make sense, since it is just after Christmas, and I, like I am sure many of you are, are looking back at the last few weeks and thinking, “Well, I suppose we really need to cut back on our spending this month,” or, “Wow, I spent that much on that last month, and it’s 75% off now?” Yeah, done that a few times already!

Finances are one of the most crucial things to be together on in a marriage, and it is one of the biggest causes for divorce. When couples go in for counseling, it is amazing how often the problems can be narrowed down to money! And it’s really a no brainer, since money is stressful! I tell my husband all the time: “I hate money!” But it’s not really the money I hate. It’s how controlling of our lives it is.

The New Testament reminds us in 1 Timothy 6:10, “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.” (NIV). And Matthew 6:24 says, “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.” These aren’t the only two verses about money. In fact, I did a little research and discovered that money is mentioned more than 800 times in Scripture! Hmm. Do you think that God is trying to tell us something?

Well, finances have been something that my husband and I have been discussing at length lately. It seems that in the last six months our bills have just continued to increase. We moved into a smaller, more expensive apartment (unfortunately we made too much money to live in our last place, government subsidized), and our car insurance shot through the roof after an accident we had this past summer. And to boot, our student loans have all come due right before Christmas, and it is a lot more each month than we feel comfortable paying, but the government says that we can afford it. Oy!

So, what does God tell us about money? Just look at the two verses I mentioned. They are warnings! Let’s break these two down and see how we can apply it as pastor’s wives to our everyday lives! Money is one of those necessary things in the world today, and so we have to learn to use it in the best, most God-honoring way!

The verse in 1 Timothy starts with this; “ For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil…” How often have you heard people quote that? Even people who have never picked up a Bible know this verse (It’s amazing to me how God’s wisdom is knowledgeable even to those who don’t want it!). One thing that I immediately realized is that “love” isn’t in a positive sense in this verse. It really is more like “obsessing over.”

We can “love” money by worrying over it, because it is consuming our attention, and in the second verse from Matthew, it tells us that we can’t love God and money!

We can “love” money by not spending it wisely, and then leaving your family in a situation where you can’t afford necessities. I know for my husband and I, we really enjoy going out to eat, but it is a lot of money, and sometimes at the end of the month, it is really, really hard to make ends meet. And it was because we weren’t wise with our money, weren’t good stewards with what God had given us, especially now that things are tighter. This doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy things with the money God has provided us with, but it does mean that we need to use wisdom and not be careless. I keep hearing myself say,” We need to make sure we are living within our means!”

We can also “love” money by thinking that we don’t make enough, or, more accurately, are greedy for more. One thing that my husband always reminds me of is that God has us where we are right now for a reason, and He is the one who provided us with the jobs we have and is the one who provides our income. But sometimes I just wish that I made more money, so I could afford a nice house or a better car or a new computer. You name it, I’ve probably wanted it! And it isn’t wrong to want those sorts of things. It’s when I want those things more than I want Christ that it’s wrong! Again, we can’t love both!

I could tell you at least a dozen stories of times when money coming in was not enough, and yet, somehow, all of our bills were paid, we were able to purchase groceries, and it constantly amazed me. God really is so good to us, and He truly will provide for all of our, and your, needs! I think the verse in Matthew really can teach us something living in the 21st century. Our society is so obsessed with making money, winning contests (or the lottery; 1.3 billion anyone?), and in general being better than other people. It’s very self-motivated, self-reliant, and lonely. But God is telling us that when we become consumed with money, and all of the things that that entails, we aren’t relying on Him to provide for us. Really, we aren’t letting Him take care of us. Because He promises that He will take care of us. He will make sure that our families aren’t left out in the cold. He will make sure that you will find a way to get to work if your car breaks down. He will make sure that you have enough groceries to get through until your next paycheck (He did make a little bread and some fish stretch for a few thousand people, right?).

Last night I was worrying about our income. My husband was wondering how we could bring more money in. And we will pray about it, together. But instead of worrying about it, we are going to rely on our Heavenly Father, who loves us so much that He won’t allow us to fall. Trust Him with any and all of your financial concerns, and you will be amazed how freeing it is. And why would you want to love something that is only paper, when we can instead choose to love Jesus, who loved us so much that He died for us?

Thanks for reading! I’m praying for you! ☺

~Kate

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