“People go through three conversions: the conversion of their head, their heart and their pocketbook. Unfortunately, not all at the same time.” -Martin Luther
In 1517, Martin Luther nailed his famed 95 Theses on the Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany. This act of protest would spark the Protestant Reformation. While the content of his concerns were salvific in nature, he went on to teach everything under the sun about living out the Christian life, including the need for us to have a conversion experience related to the way we think about our money. Continue reading “We Need a Reformation of the Pocketbook!”
We entitle our blog- God Owns It All. We host the blog on a different site. The hope is to help create resources and help our readers understand that our Creator God does still retain the rights to all things. We are just the managers of the resources He has lent us for a short time.
“THE EARTH IS THE LORD’S, AND ALL IT CONTAINS, THE WORLD, AND THOSE WHO DWELL IN IT. FOR HE HAS FOUNDED IT UPON THE SEAS AND ESTABLISHED IT UPON THE RIVERS.” PSALMS 24:1-2
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The western idea of retirement is an interesting one, and to be honest, it may be one of the weaker ones out there. We are supposed to take care of our kids, our aging parents, needs in our faith communities, and the larger communities that we live in. At the same time, we are supposed to stockpile enough savings to carry us through 10, 20, or sometimes 30 non-working years referred to as retirement. Additionally, we are expected to live a long, healthy life, independent of all assistance from our grown children, our church, or our government.
This is the American Dream for retirement, and for some, they have been able to be prepared in this manner. However, for many of us, this is the American Nightmare full of shame, regret, and tremendous pressure.
How we wish we could go back and talk to our 22-year-old self and plead with him or her to put more money aside, but we can’t. To our chagrin, our retirement days can be some of the scariest we have faced. Can God be trusted during these days? Continue reading “Can GOD be Trusted in our Old Age? Psalms 71”
Our community is awash with spring fundraisers. It seems like the majority of the churches are having spring-break mission trips. All of the the nonprofits are targeting tax-return season. It can be overwhelming, and if you are not careful, you can become a bit jaded or bitter towards the requests or potential requests you are receiving. However, if you have a plan for your finances (specifically your giving dollars), this can be one of the greatest times of the year for you. Giving opportunities, when you have money set aside for giving, are some of the more encouraging uses of your finances. It’s like being a kid in a candy store with a little change!
I heard of a man recently say, “I wish all these kids would stop sending me letters about their mission trips.”
What??? Continue reading “3 Ways to Purposefully Give Back to the Community”
Ever wonder what Jesus had to say about money?
Some say that He spoke as much about money as heaven or hell. Ever wondered where the Bible verses are located regarding this topic? We have taken the guess work out of it. We have identified the key passages in the gospels where Jesus talks about money, uses money to illustrate something or where money intersects strongly with the topic at hand. Click here to get the study!
Side note: Some of the parables about money are in more than one gospel, so we included it all. You can compare between them for your own edification!
Check out this excerpt from a 1918 book called Money the Acid Test by DAVID McCONAUGHY:
This could be a hidden gem of a book!
You may not believe this, but missionaries are not assuming that you are going to give to their ministry. They hope you might. But honestly, they have no idea where God is going to send the money from. All they can do is meet with folks, share their vision, and wait to see what happens. They don’t think less of you or judge you. They just want you to consider their cause. Earlier I wrote an article entitled “Why Would I Say “No” To a Missionary?” where we addressed the great opportunity to be involved as a financial and prayer partner with ministries around the world. However, the reality is that the Lord will not lead us to support every cause we are exposed to. He knows, and we know, that we have limited resources and must be strategic with the money we are stewarding. Continue reading “What Should I do if I don’t Feel Led to Give to a Missionary?”
by Tim Howington
Can I Trust Him?
The long and the short of it is simply an issue of trust. Can you and I trust God? Can you trust Him to make all things work out for good in your life? This is the essence of the faith walk: trust. Without faith (trust) it is impossible to please Him and faith (trust) is in its very nature a belief in things we cannot see. If you and I must walk by sight we will struggle in the faith walk. And if I am honest, it is at this point that I struggle. Can I trust Him?
My Dad passed away recently and as he was struggling through his last days I saw the fear in his eyes of uncertainty about death. Continue reading “Chapter 9- Can I Trust Him?”
By Tim Howington
Refreshed by Generosity
I don’t think she even understood how desperate our plight had become. Not just in terms of money but more importantly morale. Hundreds of prayers seem to be bouncing off the ceiling and as they say in Arkansas “my dauber was in the dirt.” And then the check came. The check from one of our partners is normally $100 a month but this one was $300. I called my buddy to thank him for the extra and he quickly deflected to his wife (whom I haven’t met yet). Seems she felt impressed of the Lord to send some extra money. I live in Arkansas and God led someone in Mississippi to meet a need that I have been petitioning Him about privately. God moved another person to generosity on my behalf. When I talked to my buddy his comment was classic, “don’t thank us, it’s not our money anyway, we just manage the Lord’s money”. I have just been refreshed by generosity.
What does that have to do with managing ourselves in times of financial crisis? Continue reading “Chapter Eight- Refreshed by Generosity”
by Tim Howington
Give Me My Portion
God is great, beer is good and people are crazy. This is the chorus to one of my favorite country songs. The story line of the song is about two guys who meet in a bar and hit it off and talk into the wee hours of the morning about all kinds of things especially how to navigate life. Turns out that one of the guys is a millionaire who ends up cutting his kids out of his will and leaving his fortune to this guy he barely knew. The song goes on to say, “His kids were mad as hell, but me… I’m doing well. God is great beer is good and people are crazy.”
When it comes to inheritances people are indeed crazy. So many families are torn to shreds based on how they respond to the loss of a loved one. In our business of helping families with their finances, we engage with people in their estate planning. Without a good estate plan many a parent has sent their household into a pretty predictable outcome of chaos as the children fight over the stuff. A good will and trust plan helps to define what each child should expect as their portion of the estate.
Have you ever wondered what your portion is as a child of God? Continue reading “Chapter Seven- Give Me My Portion”