I’m thankful to have this poignant and sweet post by Barbara Winters today! Hooray!
“Mom, may we eat at Hardee’s tonight?”
“Mom, may we get a movie?”
“Those shorts are really cool. Can I get a pair?”
I field these questions from my children regularly.
They aren’t the only ones who desire new things. At times, I covet items that don’t fit into our budget. My husband is a pastor at a small church and I am a home schooling mom. We are committed to living debt-free while I stay home to raise our children and take care of the household chores.
Because of our financial status, we must make thoughtful choices. So when a question arises about whether we can purchase an item not in our budget, instead of saying, “We can’t afford it,” I say, “We choose not to spend our money in that way.” For example, we prefer to purchase higher-priced high quality groceries than eat out. And we prefer to save for a family vacation than go to the movies once a month. Truthfully, many times we could afford “it,” but would need to sacrifice something else. It’s a matter of perspective and attitude.
A positive attitude is rooted in the belief that everything is God’s. We are simply stewards of His money. Decisions become easier under this conviction.
My children even understand this principle. I teach them that we are to spend God’s money the way in which He leads. I gently remind them they could have more material items, but Mommy would have to work. At this prompting, they recognize a mom at home is better than a disposable item.
The verbiage “We choose not to spend our money in that way,” also honors my husband. He is the breadwinner in our family, and I do not want to demean him or cause him to feel inadequate in any way.
Even if we were millionaires, our family would still spend God’s money in a way that glorifies Him. So I’d continue to say, “We choose not to spend our money in that way. We prefer to spend it on ‘x’ instead.”
What about you? What is your perspective and attitude toward money? Can you say with the psalmist, “The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it?” (Psalm 24:1)
Barbara Winters and her husband, Don, have four children, Kevin, JT, Kenneth, and Melinda. Barbara home schools her children and encourages her husband in his pastorate position. Barbara writes a column on the characteristics of God for Lucid Magazine at www.lucidmagazine.com , has several articles available for purchase at http://www.churchmousepublications.com/ , and blogs at http://foodliesandtruth.blogspot.com/ .