Before I begin this topic I want to say; this is from experience and is not from a place of condemnation or annoyance. My desire is that people would live in the knowledge of God as their Father who loves giving good gifts, and an understanding that everything belongs to Him.
1. Do you feel like you have to save all your money?
Being in missions, I have seen this a lot. We come into things with, “this is my money,” or, “I worked hard for this!” James 1:17 says, “Every good and perfect gift comes down from the Father of lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”
Everything good comes from the Father, therefore even our money is from Him. Let’s be careful to not hold onto it tightly and let it become an idol.
2. Are you constantly talking about money?
Do you feel like people need to hear of your need for money or how you can’t afford something? God is generous and people want to help, but do you feel like you deserve that money and the only way to get it is always telling people or joking about someone giving to you? A lot of times this comes out of fear. Fear that you’re stuck and you won’t get the money you need. “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:7) Check the heart motive behind your words!
3. Do you have a sense of financial entitlement?
Is it your money and you want it now? I kind of mentioned this earlier, but this is a little different. This says, “I own it all,” and, “I can do with this how I want; no one can tell me anything.” Does this thought come when you see some kind of non-profit mention their need? “They can work for that if they want it! I had to work for my money!” Romans 11:36 says, “For from Him and through Him and for Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever! Amen.” Everything is for His glory, not my own!
4. Are you afraid of giving anything away?
Have you ever gotten a letter from someone going on a missions trip and you like what their doing and want to give, but it doesn’t fit in your budget or you need to save it for retirement? “A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.” (Proverbs 11:25) God’s heart is generous; He loves giving and giving freely. Remember He gave it to you first and He will always provide your every need.
5. Do you feel like you can only shop at thrift stores?
I love my Chacos! While they are the most comfortable shoes I have ever owned, they are also the most expensive. But they have lasted me a long time and my feet don’t hurt after wearing them all day. Sometimes it’s hard because people expect missionaries or people in ministry to own cheap and second hand things. “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” (Matthew 6:25-26) Ultimately God is our provider. He’s the one who provides all things for all people, regardless of their profession.
6. Are you afraid to let go?
The need to horde things is a quick sign that you are living with a poverty mindset. Do you go through your closet, see things you haven’t worn in years, and instead of getting rid of those items, you keep them “just in case” you need them later. “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith?”
Let’s live in the place of surrender and gratitude when it comes to our finances!
Lizzy Boettcher – Cambridge, Minnesota
If you’ve seen Lizzy’s steady spirit and tireless work ethic, you won’t be surprised to learn that she grew up on a midwestern farm. Around here you’ll see her tackling whatever task she’s given with her signature farm-girl grit. Lizzy is deeply committed to people and serves from her heart with thoughtfulness and generosity. She genuinely desires to love and welcome others, so you’ll quickly feel at peace when you’re with her. Just don’t ask her what’s involved in making sausages from those pigs her family raises. You don’t want to know.