WISDOM IN SPENDING
The socioeconomic condition after covid-19 pandemic has grown worse. Businesses closed down, people lost their jobs and prices of consumables and food items went so high. Other happenings such as insurgencies and banditry has made some nations experience worse situations. Inflation rate keeps skyrocketing, although salaries do not increase in such proportions. Families are struggling to keep up with bills while ensuring they feed adequately. These conditions affect Christian and non-Christian families alike. There is the need to make good and adequate adjustments to ensure that one is not swallowed up in the hustle for survival. No matter how meagre our finances are, and the pilled-up needs on our budget, God owns the tenth of our income. We must not be in the habit of spending all.
As believers God owns the tenth of our gross income and other little income like gifts. He owns the tenth of our profit as business men and women. We must give this reverentially and prayerfully, asking him to bless the remaining finance. We must guard against allowing pressures of life, pushing us to spend God’s money. It is stealing from God and it attracts a curse (Mal 3:8-10). Give to God what belongs to Him.
Apart from giving to God, we must cultivate the habit of giving to people in need. No matter how tight we are, there are those who are in need more than we are and are looking up to us. There are also extended family members and friends whom we are responsible for. We must try to touch their lives in some way. Apart from giving to God and others, there are personal principles of spending that will make our finances, a lot easier to manage. First, we must make budget before our income comes so we do not squander on unintended items as soon as we get the money. 10% of our income must be our minimum tithe (some persons may decide they’ll pay more than this). Generally, 10% should be saved and another 10% to offset any debt we may be owing while the remaining 70% should be used to cater for our needs. We must be disciplined to follow our budget and not just make it a paper work.
There is always the tendency to buy things on credit or borrow if one is struggling financially. Be disciplined to wait until you have the money to take care of the need. Who knows, you might as well discover later that you don’t really need them. Whatever debt we acquire before engaging wisdom should be offset with the 10% of our earnings. Don’t be pressurized to offset all debts with your earnings and then borrow to survive and the cycle of debt continues. Some people especially buy on impulse.
Being disciplined and resisting the urge to buy what is not on our budget although we feel we need them will go a long way to make us financially stable. Hawkers on traffic, roadside traders and marketers in offices must be approached with the important question of – ‘Do I really need them?’. Answer sincerely and if it is not in the affirmative, resist the urge and move on. Don’t just carelessly window-shop in the market or at any online stores. Be careful when you see adverts on social media and other apps. Gone are the days we are advised not to take our monthly pay to the market, only your ATM card with you may mean your life earnings with you, be disciplined!