Everyone Hates Budgets
At the end of every month, I drag out the computer and stare at by budget. I dread doing my budget so much, that often I do not get it done until the 4th or the 5th. Something about telling myself how much I can spend on things really irks me. But month after month I find myself creating and sticking to a budget because there is no better way to steward the money that God has given me.
“The quickest way to double your money is to fold it in half and put it in your back pocket.” ― Will Rogers
These days, it seems like there are a million different people screaming at me, trying to convince me to do something with my money. Whether it is some investing scheme or a new credit card with great benefits, everyone knows what is best for my money. I love this quote from Will Rogers because it gives me permission to be simple in my money management.
Not My Money
The bible is clear that everything we have is from the Lord. Money is not excluded from this and so we have to treat all of our finances as if they are a kingdom issue(because they are). As a steward of the money God has blessed you with, there are right and wrong ways to handle it. I love planning finances but if you do not, good news! You can keep it really simple and still honor God.
No Way Out of a Budget
The simplest and easiest way to start stewarding money properly is a written monthly budget. A budget is just a list of your expenses and other things you want to spend money on. It is like taking your finances blood pressure. Until you have a written monthly budget, you will not be responsible with your money and conversely, it will not do things for you. A few things a budget can help you do
- Track Income
- Compare spending month to month
- Help find more money to save or invest
- Keep you accountable to tithe
Lead in Money
As a Christian husband and soon to be father, I am called to lead my family with a biblical example. One of the most caring ways I can lead my family is managing our money properly. For me, this starts with a monthly budget. It may seem simple but there are a lot of great things our family experienced that have started with a budget. Some of the financial goals we have met with a budget include:
- Pay off over $65,000 of debt I brought into our marriage
- Pay cash for a newer “mom car”
- Support our college campus ministry
- Build a transition fund for a career change
Matthew 24:14-30 “The Parable of the Talents”
This passage speaks of investing and caring for God’s money. We see that there are right and wrong ways to handle the money that was given to us. No matter what your finances look like or how little (or much) you have to manage, it is still important to God. How we manage our money shows the world how we are different, it blesses our families and can allow us to give generously to others. But… It all starts with a budget.