Become money wiseCLF
Every morning I make myself a cup of coffee, but the coffee does not really taste good. Every time I hope that the coffee will taste better the following day, but it doesn’t happen. Why not? Because I keep on pouring the same amount of the same stuff in the same order into my mug. Stupid, isn’t it! If I don’t change anything, the taste will of course not change!
If all is well with your money matters, nothing needs to change. If all is not well, the question is: Do you keep on hoping that one day it will suddenly become better? Well, that will not happen by itself. If you keep on thinking about money and spending it as you have done up to now, it will keep on going badly. Not even having more money will change your situation.
That is why I want to invite you to think differently about money and spend it differently. If you do that, you will be surprised at how quickly it gets better.
1. Focus on what you already have
Almost all people believe that they receive too little money. Therefore they constantly talk about what they do not have. They talk about what they will do when only they have more money. Only a few people focus on what they already have – whether it is little or much. They are eager to use the money that they already have better. They are the ones that get ahead!
Tip: Ask yourself the question: Do I spend the money that I already receive appropriately and responsibly? Can I spend it even better? Remember: “You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things.” (Matthew 25:14-30).
2. Wisdom and knowledge are more important than money and possessions
Read Proverbs 2:1-4, 3:13-16 and 4:7-8, as well as 16:16 and 24:3-4. You can easily lose money and the things that you possess. That which you know, nobody can take away from you. Therefore knowledge is more important than possessions.
Tip: Acquire knowledge, seek wisdom, strive for insight. Learn to continually work better with your money. Learn new skills. Let your children learn. Do not take them out of school prematurely to go and work for money.
3. Instant wealth will not help you
Read Proverbs 13:11 and 23:5. If you do not have the knowledge and skill to gather money little by little over time, you will also not know what to do with lots of money if you suddenly receive it. Overnight it will disappear again.
Tip: Do not be greedy, play the Lotto and place your hope on instant wealth. Read Ephesians 5:5 and 1 Timothy 6:17-19.
4. Be honest
Money and things that you attain in a dishonest way, does not take you ahead in life. Read Proverbs 10:2, 15:6, 20:21, 21:6
Tip: Do not lie about your income or your health to obtain a government grant. Do not steal. Stay away from fraud.
5. Do not try to impress people with money
Be careful! Be particularly cautious at weddings, funerals and parties.
Tip: Don’t buy things that you don’t need, with money that you don’t have, to impress people that you don’t like.
Weddings: Often thousands of rands are spent on the ceremony that lasts only a few hours, while nothing is spent to learn more about marriage that must last a lifetime. That is why such marriages do not last long. It is not the amount of money that you spend that makes a wedding important, but that God instituted it (Matthew 19:4-6) and that it is a lasting covenant between man and woman
Tip: Do not try to impress family and friends with a grand wedding; impress them with your firm conviction to not have sex before your wedding. Impress them with a healthy and happy marriage!
Funerals: Show your loved ones respect while they live! Express your appreciation for everything that is beautiful and good. Give flowers while you can. People who have died do not take note of what happens on their funerals.
Tip: Do net let people take advantage of your grief just to make money out of you by making you feel guilty if you do not buy the best and most expensive coffin and invite many people to a meal. Live in unity and love now, then you will not need to cover up your feelings of guilt and bad relationships with an expensive funeral that plunges you into debt.
Parties: A birthday is a good opportunity to praise and thank God for his faithful care and safekeeping. But when expensive parties are hosted (even for babies) to impress other people, you are wasting money.
Tip: Remember that the best you can give your children is not expensive gifts or parties, but personal love and attention. The biggest gift is this: Dad, love the mother of your children and remain faithful to her. Mom, love the father of your children and remain faithful to him.
6. Stay away from debt – it makes your poorer
Interest is the money that you must pay for the privilege to use someone else’s money (we call it capital) for a certain time. If you use this money to make money (for example, to buy sheep that procreate, or to buy vegetables that you sell), you may be able to pay back the borrowed capital as well as the interest on it. If, however, you borrow money to buy food and ordinary consumer goods (clothes, furniture or a cell phone), you will struggle to pay back your debt plus the interest, because these commodities do not make more money; they rather lose worth.
Tip: Save first and then buy cash. Then you can ask for discount and that places you on the way to victory. Stay away from cash loans. They impose high interest rates and before you know where you are, you are their slave. Read Proverbs 22:7.
Tip: If you must borrow money, remember the following three things:
Borrow as little as possible, because you have to pay back everything – capital and interest.
Pay back as quickly as possible. The longer you take, the more interest you will pay.
Pay back as much as possible. The more you pay per month, the quicker you will be done and the less interest you will pay.
Remember that the people from who you borrow money (banks, cash loans or shops) want exactly the opposite. The more you borrow, the less you pay back each month and the longer you take to pay back everything, the more money they make out of you. Then they get richer and you become poorer. Don’t let them catch you.
7. Use what you have
Read 2 Kings 4:1-7 and John 6:4-14. You have something! Make the most of what you have. Use your skills and your time. Harness each opportunity to learn something more. Make use of everything that God gave us in his great goodness: land (even if it is as big as the door of your house), sunshine and rain (water). He also gives plants and animals. God created many things that multiply – that produce.
Tip: Make your own vegetable garden close to your home. In this way you can supply in many of you family’s needs, save money and teach your children responsibility. There are many people and organisations that can teach you to do it successfully.
Produce your own meat by keeping a few chickens or rabbits. Start farming with bees and sell the honey. What about fish if water is available? You can grow succulents or other herbs and medicinal plants (for example, cancer bush – Sutherlandia frutescens). If you start searching for opportunities, you will find them. Ask friends, but also ask God’s help and advice.
You can overcome poverty, but then you need to learn how to use the money that you already have even better. It does not help desiring another person’s possessions if you are not trustworthy and responsible with your own. Read Luke 16:10-12. Be faithful and you will experience the Lord’s blessing on your finances.
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