God has a financial plan that will make you successful. The Bible teaches God-breathed principles that transcend all cultures and eras. His economic blueprint does not depend on how much money you make. Nevertheless, the burden is on you to make the decision to live by His principles or by your feelings. God's laws work no matter how high or low your income level is. His truths are transcendent.
Every person possesses unique abilities and passions. God, in His wisdom, has given us distinctive personalities, different levels of giftedness, and personal yearnings. God's plans work for every personality and gift type. Whether you are a business owner and desire to make enough money to travel the world, or you work for someone else, want to live a simple life, and plan to retire early, His principles work the same. Here are a few things He teaches us about our relationship with money.
Begin with the Tithe
God says that He MUST be first. He is the priority in our finances. How do I put Him first? God says the first step is tithing. The purpose of tithing is to teach you always to put God first in your lives. (Deuteronomy 14:23) This makes sense because tithing is an exercise in faith.
The Bible teaches us that the tithe is the first ten percent of our income. Notice it is the first part, not the leftovers. God has always demanded to be first in every part of our life. Once I prioritize God in my finances, it is easier to begin to prioritize other aspects of my spending.
Be thankful. It sounds simple, but it works. Be thankful for what you have. Learn to be content, and it will quell lots of unnecessary spending and unwanted debt. How many times do we buy something that just hangs in the closet or gathers dust in our basement? Thankfulness and contentment simplify your life and bring a margin to your finances. If you don’t get this principle, then all the financial planning in the world will not be enough, because no matter how much you make or how much you have, it will never be enough. The Apostle Paul said, “For I have learned to be satisfied with what I have.” (Philippians 4:11)
Manage Your Spending
Once you put faith in your finances and manage your contentment, then you can effectively manage your money. Save and invest in yourself. Wise people do not live at or above their means, but they keep some margin in their lives. King Solomon wrote, “The wise man saves for the future, but the foolish man spends whatever he gets.” Follow a budget. Once you have done that, then you can fully enjoy life for a long period of time.
God does want you to enjoy life. Some feel guilty about this and don’t enjoy God’s blessings. Others miss out on real joy because they seek it in the wrong things. God desires to bless you! Following His plan opens the possibility of fully enjoying our time here. Jesus said He came to give us life to the fullest.
King Solomon was a wise man. The Bible says that he was the wisest man who ever lived. When he wrote the book of Ecclesiastes, he wrote from the perspective of one that did not live for God's purposes. That is why the book has such a depressing theme about the meaninglessness of life. However, even in his depressed state, he observed that God's ways are always the best ways. Consider his thoughts on money and work. “And it is a good thing to receive wealth from God and the good health to enjoy it. To enjoy your work and accept your lot in life—that is indeed a gift from God.” Ecclesiastes 5:19
Life is indeed a gift from God. Enjoy it!