God's Financial Planning

When you start to manage money the way God wants you to, you will be blessed. The blessings you receive can come in a variety of forms. We have seen it over and over again in different peoples lives as they start down the path of financial stewardship.

Like most things in life it is sometimes easier to see God working in other's lives instead of your own. However, when you take a step back you can see God at work in your own life. Here is how God has been working over time in our financial lives.

We have been working hard to save up enough money to put a new metal roof on our house. Our current shingled roof is very old and is in need of replacement. With the amount we set aside every month we would have the funds by June to replace it ourselves (not contracting it out).

Along with way several things happened. The first was that the Mr.'s annual bonus was cut to almost nothing. It would not be enough to cover the cost of our daughter's school tuition for next year. Our boiler also broke and the cost of repair made us think twice about fixing our 50 yr old boiler vs. replacing it.

The funds we needed were adding up fast. We were not sure what to do. But we prayed for God to give us direction. Then we waited and watched his plan unfold. First thing he did was make us remember that the Mr. had an all but forgotten savings account from his childhood. He never wanted to close it and we thought that there was only about $50 in it since it earned almost nothing in interest. We decided while working on taxes that it was time to close that account. That was when we found out how much was in it. There was $1,564 in the account! Which happened to be the amount we were short on for next year's tuition. We knew right away that God wanted our daughter to continue to go to the Catholic school and He provided the way this year. This would give us another 12 months to work the cost of tuition into our monthly budget but we were not sure how, yet.

After completing our taxes we were shocked to find out that we would be getting back over $4k! We had not expected to receive that large of a refund. We had never received more then $1,500 before so this made it even more unexpected. Since we didn't have plans for this money we went back and forth about what to do. We had already talked about putting off the roof one more year and using those funds to replace the boiler since they would cost about the same. We thought that the best use of the tax refund funds would be to save up for a new car since ours are getting up in age and miles. We also adjusted his withholdings so that we would not have such a large refund. This adjustment gave him a "pay raise" of $260 a month. Which happens to be the amount we needed to come up with a month for tuition! Once again we took the time to pray. We asked God for some more guidance and thanked Him for the tuition funds.

This time he was very clear about what he wanted done. That Sunday while we were getting ready for Church I heard a weird noise in the kitchen. When I turned the hallway corner and looked into the kitchen I was horrified. The roof was leaking and the hard rain we were receiving was pouring into our kitchen. After Church I started to smell something musty smelling in the living room. Two days later I realized that the roof was leaking around the living room fireplace. The ceiling around it was soft and musty. God made it very clear to us that we needed a new roof and we needed it now! Not in another year.

After God clarified our needs a little more I sat down with all our numbers. Our savings funds, our projected repair/replacement costs. We kept God's plan and signs in our minds as we discerned his will for us and his money (that we manage for him).

Here is the breakdown of our decisions.

  • 2009/2010 tuition would be covered by bonus and closed savings account funds.
  • Future tuition would be covered by the monthly savings added to the budget by the increased take home pay.
  • Roof would be replaced by us but we are going to use higher end shingles to fit in our budget and make it easier for us to install w/ the help of friends.
  • Boiler would be replaced w/ a high efficiency boiler using the tax refund along w/ a little from the roof fund.
  • Car replacement fund would not see a dime. We will just make do for now and save up when we get some extra money.

It's amazing to see God working in our life when we just give him a chance. Have you seen God working with you on solving your money problems? Do you take the time to pray before making large financial decisions? Tell us your story!


Mercy Mei said...

You've reinforced an important point: God helps those who help themselves. If we passively approach things, more often than not, nothing will change. Or if it does, it may not always be what we want or need.

I was driving myself crazy with worry over my phone bills, for example. Every month, I'd go over my minutes.

I didn't know what to do, Then ione day when I was wondering around WalMart I saw a display for Net10 prepaid phones. They were good quality phones so I bought one and now I never run over my minutes because I pay for them up front.

The point is, God gave us the ability to think and act and we have to use these things to make our lives better.

That's my story. I try to use what I've been given by God to make things easier and better for myself and my family!

Willie Sutton said...

Yes, we have free will and must use our minds. We have choices to make.

And you're wise to point out that using a phone with no bills or contracts is a good idea.

A Tracfone will help you track your spending since you are required to buy your phone and pay up front with no bills.

It may not be for everyone but if you are seeking to cut spending, it could be a good way to go.

Blog Widget by LinkWithin