What does it meant to be a good stewards of God’s money? To be a good steward of the money the Lord provides us with, we need to get (and keep) our finances under control.
Proverbs 14:8 The wisdom of the prudent is to discern his way, but the folly of fools is deceiving.
This also includes getting out of debt.
Romans 13:8 Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.
God is allowing us to use His money. Finances are to be managed properly (and invested) so they will bear fruit and grow.
Proverbs 21:20 Precious treasure and oil are in a wise man’s dwelling, but a foolish man devours it.
We must develop a budget.
Luke 14:28-30 For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’
A proper budget allows for planning and awareness of what is currently occurring with our finances. In addition to being aware of what is going on with our finances, a budget allows us to be better stewards of the money the Lord has provide us with.
2 Corinthians 9:6 The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.
- Being a good steward of finances will allow for you to save (1 Corinthians 16:2 “On the first day of every week, each of you is to put something aside and store it up, as he may prosper, so that there will be no collecting when I come”.)
- Being a good steward of finances will allow for you to pay off debt (Psalms 37:21 “The wicked borrows but does not pay back, but the righteous is generous and gives;”. Matthew 5:25-26 “Come to terms quickly with your accuser while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison. Truly, I say to you, you will never get out until you have paid the last penny.”)
- Being a good steward of finances will allow for you to invest (maybe in retirement? Or a down payment for a new home or car?). Proverbs 21:5 “The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance, but everyone who is hasty comes only to poverty.”
- Being a good steward of finances will allow for you to give (2 Corinthians 9:7 Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
Now that we understand why we are to be good stewards of our finances we need to find a tangible way to keep on top of all of this. How and what is the best tool to use in order to manage finances?
There are several programs that are out there but we can only recommend ones we’ve used and have had success using.
We transitioned to Mint.com early last year and love it. On occasion we will use a spread sheet to give us a future reference if we are playing around with different potential scenarios, but for the most part we just use Mint.com.
Without getting into too overwhelming detail here are some basics:
- Free to use
- Secure with the same 128-bit encryption and security that banks use. Verified by TRUSTe and VeriSign, and they are supported by RSA Security.
- You can set up a budget for everything. Kind of like the envelope system but all virtual and online. How can this work in your favor? Well let’s say you set a budget of 100$ per month for clothing. If you go over it you will get an instant notification. You can also choose to receive a notification if you are close to it. So if you want to know when you hit the 80$ mark, you can set it up to alert you at that point.
- You can also set up custom alerts to know when your account reaches an amount defined by you.
- Lists your transactions (they pull this from your bank account). These transactions are classified in categories (food, paycheck, transfer, books, groceries, ect.). If you want to rename the category you can if needed.
- Trends is a great part of Mint.com. We love it because we can visually see in a graph what is eating up most of our money. They make this graph based on your categories, so make sure you have them set up to your personal preferences.
- If you have a mortgage, credit card, or debt you can track it’s pay off in Mint.com too. We think that can be kind of fun because you can see how much you have left, and that can prove to be motivating.
So definitely go check out Mint.com if you’re looking for an easy, efficient and customizable method to manage your finances and be better stewards of His provisions to you and your family.
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