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A Mom and her daughter were sitting at the dining room table discussing the activities coming up during the course of the next week. When the topic of starting soccer practice came up the young girl said, “Oh Mommy, can I please get new shorts to wear to practice?” The mother with tears in her eyes said, “Honey we just don’t have the money right now; maybe some other time.” The girl promptly responded, “Don’t be sad Mommy, you can just go get some out of the wall with your card.”

Where does money come from? From a young age that seems to be one of the biggest mysteries of life. Sure we can get it out of an ATM, write a check, have it direct deposited out of our bank accounts, or use our credit to pay it later, but where does that money come from? Most of us would probably answer that our money comes from a paycheck, a pension, an inheritance a rebate, or our birthday gifts. We earned that money. It’s ours; BUT is it really?

Back at the beginning of our lives God created us in our mother’s womb. God created each hair on our head, each bone in our body, each gift we possess. And as we came into this world God again claimed us as his own in the waters of baptism. Everyday since that day everything we do, every action that we take every, every decision we make needs to be in direct response to the love and abundant generosity God has given to us. God’s generosity exceeds our expectations, forgiving both our sins and giving us the gift of eternal life.

So you may be thinking what does this have to do with money? If the decisions that we make are in direct relation to God’s love for us then each time we swipe our debit cards we are using God’s money. Are we making good decisions with God’s resources that we are managing for him? Jesus spoke most about taking care of the poor. Jesus spent his time and resources lifting up the poor and lowly. Is that reflective in the spending and tending of our time and money?

I’m sure the question in your mind is, “You want me to give up my stuff? You want me to give up my hard earned money? For what? For whom?” As Christian people we have a responsibility to decide what our needs to live are and then base our budgets accordingly. As you are planning your budget are you allowing a spot for your church offering, giving of your first fruits back to God? Are you allowing a spot for flood victims, tsunami, tornado and hurricane survivors, the American Cancer Society, the local food pantry, adopting a child in Africa, domestic violence victims? Where is your money going?

Now I’m not asking you to fix the entire worlds problems with your income. That just isn’t realistic, especially in the current economy. But what is realistic is that your money and your time reflect who you are as a person and what you believe. If you value playing golf, I’m sure that is in your budget. Why not include God if God truly is a priority? I know personally that it can be overwhelming to try and tithe 10%, but what about 1% a year until you can get there? What about having a plan and not spending haphazardly? We tend to first use our money for our own needs, wants, and hobbies and THEN whatever is left over gets handed over to God. Let’s have a plan! Let’s try to have our budgets more effectively reflect our priorities and values.

Money is a touchy subject, but God is clear. Everything that we have from our DNA to spiritual gifts to our talents to our money belongs to God. While on this earth we are just managing God’s stuff for God. So let everything that we do in regards to our spending be a response to God’s love and promises for us.

Photo by: Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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