Money Perspective

Dollar bank note money backgroundI do enjoy money. I’ve not met a lot of people who don’t enjoy having money. Money is a medium. There are some people who use it to help their family buy food and others who use it to buy drugs. Money is never the problem, it’s the people who manage it. Money does what we tell it to do. I see money as good because I use it to accomplish good for me and my family. The Word of God is clear about the LOVE of money. Check this out…

For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and by craving it, some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. (1 Timothy 6:10 CSB)

 Keep your life free from the love of money. Be satisfied with what you have, for he himself has said, I will never leave you or abandon you. Therefore, we may boldly say,

The Lord is my helper;
I will not be afraid.
What can man do to me? (Hebrews 11:5-6 CSB)

There are those who think if you make a lot of money, you’ll be successful. I believe it to be the opposite. I believe if I’m successful in serving others and helping them move, then I can earn a good living. Money follows successful work.  I also know that the Lord doesn’t measure success by money. He measures success by service, surrender and obedience. The more I learn about the Lord’s heart, he cared deeply about others.

I need the Lord’s wisdom in managing everything in my life – including my money. I want to use money to honor and glorify Him. I want to use the things money has provided to honor Him as well. If I’m not careful, money starts to manage me if I don’t manage it. Several years ago, I was “broke as a joke” and didn’t have “enough money in each month”. I discovered the teaching of Dave Ramsey (www.daveramsey.com) and I wanted to be free from the bondage of debt. My wife and I started dumping debt and “acting our wage” and we dumped all our consumer debt. We are very near complete freedom from debt. This journey out of debt has given me a whole new perspective on money. I’m in charge of it, but when I’m in debt to others, the amount I owe them has charge over me. I even became an Endorsed Local Provider (ELP) in Real Estate for Dave Ramsey.

I want to keep earning money to serve my family and invest in the Kingdom of God. I do want to become successful in managing money and serving with it. I want to keep a kingdom perspective on every facet of my life – including money.

Pressing On!

Dwayne

A Different Kind Of Debt

Hand giving moneyI have confessed to many that during the recession that started in 2007 and caused financial hurt to many for at least 3 or 4 years, I also had debt. I almost lost most of my material possessions because I was way too leveraged financially. In other words, I was in debt up to my eyeballs and my income stream had shrunk significantly. I look back now with gratitude that the Lord guided me through that season of life. I have since sought counsel and wisdom on managing my finances so that hopefully, I never get that close to the brink ever again.

I am learning that I now carry a different type of debt. I am profoundly grateful to so many people who have invested in me over the years to educate and build me into the man I am today. I could make a list and it would not be short. I have been challenged to be more grateful as I reflect on my life journey.

Paul writes to Philemon, the owner of Onesimus (a slave) who had found Paul and is now a Christ follower. Paul sends Onesimus back to his owner with this 25-verse letter appealing to Philemon as a Christ follower and he wants the situation to reflect the fact that both, Philemon & Onesimus are Christ followers.

17 So if you consider me a partner, welcome him as you would me. 18 And if he has wronged you in any way, or owes you anything, charge that to my account. 19 I, Paul, write this with my own hand: I will repay it—not to mention to you that you owe me even your very self. 20 Yes, brother, may I benefit from you in the Lord; refresh my heart in Christ. 21 Since I am confident of your obedience, I am writing to you, knowing that you will do even more than I say. (Philemon 17-21 CSB)

Paul’s appeal to Philemon was from the basis of their personal relationship but also as a Christ follower. Philemon is in debt to Paul. Onesimus is in debt to Philemon & Paul.  Paul made it clear that he’s in debt to Christ. These are debts that really can’t be paid off. I will carry my debts to the people who invested in me until the day I met Jesus. I am also investing into people who will “owe” me – not really me – Christ in me.

I want to continue to push back on financial debt. I want to keep paying back the people that invested in me through the years.

Pressing On!

Dwayne

Pay It Forward or Pay It Back

Hand giving moneyThere is a huge difference between these two concepts. I see “paying it forward” as kindness given not knowing if you’ll get anything in return, but maybe hoping for a reciprocal blessing in the future. “Paying it back” seems to imply a debt that is owed. I have owed people money and it is not a pleasant experience when things are tight, but the debt has to be paid.

Jacob had worked for years for the honor of marrying Laban’s daughters, Rachel and Leah. He had been consistent in his work and now he wanted the debt to be paid. His arrangement with Laban seemed a bit vague. Check this out….

25 After Rachel gave birth to Joseph, Jacob said to Laban, ‘Send me on my way so that I can go back to my own homeland. 26 Give me my wives and children, for whom I have served you, and I will be on my way. You know how much work I’ve done for you.’

27 But Laban said to him, ‘If I have found favor in your eyes, please stay. I have learned by divination that the Lord has blessed me because of you.’ 28 He added, ‘Name your wages, and I will pay them.’

29 Jacob said to him, ‘You know how I have worked for you and how your livestock has fared under my care. 30 The little you had before I came has increased greatly, and the Lord has blessed you wherever I have been. But now, when may I do something for my own household?’ (Genesis 30:25-30 NIV)

I remember buying a automobile on credit a few years back and I set the debt up on monthly payments. By the time the vehicle was paid off, it was also worn out. I think that the arrangement between Jacob and Laban was pretty much for life until Jacob wanted out. I believe the principle found in Proverbs. Check this out….

The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender. (Proverbs 22:7 NIV)

I really want to be proactive and pay things forward. I want to show kindness and love to others and I would like the same from them. I’m not paying it forward, just so they will pay me back. I believe the Lord loves it when I’m kind like He is kind. I want to pay it forward because He paid my life forward for me!

Pressing On!

Dwayne