Saturday, November 8, 2008

Money Problems

In the Christian community we find lots of people who have found victory in many areas like overcoming alcoholism, drug addictions, pornography, infidelity, etc. Many Christians still struggle with these problems, but not every Christian has ever had them. Some have never touched beer or wine or even thought about having an extra-marital affair. However, I see that it is true that the majority of us, both Christians and non-believers have had some kind of problem with money.

I've found that I seem to run in to tons of people who are currently struggling with money issues--being overdrawn, being deep in debt, wanting to give but not having the funds, unable to afford groceries or their mortgage/rent/electricity bill and more. We all have money, or need money or want more of it regardless of how much we have. We can't live in this society without money--it's just not possible.

Now money is different than credit. Contrary to popular belief, you can operate in this society without using credit cards or getting huge loans for cars and homes. I'm not saying that it's all that easy to do, but it can be done, and when we think about how many problems the mortgage loan industry is in (and we're in because of it), not to mention the credit card industry's death grip on many of us---it would seem worth it to stay away from the trap of easy money with credit and "no money down" financing.

Sometimes even people like me, who have found victory in the area of finances, particularly deep credit card debt, still find ourselves being tempted and giving in to using those stupid plastic cards to get what we want without waiting for the money to be there. Yes, I screw up, a lot. But because I know where it will end up if I don't confess my mistakes and ask for forgiveness from God-- I get back on the road to waiting on God's provision and determine to use more self-control by the power of the Holy Spirit. I hate the consequences of screwing up, and I absolutely love the freedom of not having to make payments every month for something that I've already thrown out or digested (if you know what I mean) or at the very least is worth much less than what I financed it for.

Just as the rich rule the poor, so the borrower is servant to the lender." Proverbs 22:7

Christ said he came to set the captives free--we can't be free if we're offering ourselves as servants to the credit card or finance companies. "
It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery."
Galatians 5:1

We all have to use money, but it's how we use it and how we perceive it (is it our security or our tool?) that makes the difference.

Monday, November 3, 2008


So, hey, I am in the middle of a very cool Bible study by Beth Moore, and this week's lesson is concerning Faithfulness as an aspect of the fruit of the Spirit.

I'm ALSO working on developing a study on finances, geared toward women only, and this week, I'm working on what it means to be a faithful steward or manager of God's money and "stuff." I've done this thing before, and I know what it means to be a faithful steward--but now it just means so much more! For some reason, I just didn't put together "faithful" and "faithfulness" when it comes to the Holy Spirit and all that history lesson from Hebrews 11 and the long list of faithful people from the OT.

Even with finances, we're called to have faith especially when we can't see what God's going to do or even what the final result is of our saving, spending, giving, etc. We're to listen to God and move forward despite our blind-spot and be faithful with what he's given us and what he's given us to do.

I can only be truly faithful if I have the Holy Spirit within me, allowing Him to reign in my life and show the fruit that He brings forth.

Cool stuff.

Now, if only I can keep this one down to 30 minutes when I teach it in the Spring! :) That's for another lesson--the one on self-control.