Photo: Recently, I went to visit my family in Nebraska. This cornfield is right across from my Mom's home. Nature can be so calm and peaceful and can help you become more content.
Earlier this summer, I was feeling frustrated that our savings account wasn’t growing as fast as I had hoped. Don’t get me wrong, it was growing a couple thousand dollars a month, but I wasn’t content in that. I wanted to be financially free today. This mindset can be very dangerous, because it can lead to people going out and making risky decisions. I could have gone out and bought a lottery ticket to try to earn fast money or tried to gamble my way to a fortune. Thankfully, on the same day that I was feeling down about my finances, I listened to an audiobook that talked about contentment. This chapter on contentment brought me back to earth and helped me realize that life is made up of multiple seasons and the path to financial independence is a long journey. It won’t happen over night. This gave me peace and has helped me look at my life and finances with more contentment.
The best way to understand contentment is to first understand that we don't own anything. The Lord Almighty owns everything. This can be found multiple times in the Bible.
This first passage from Psalm 1:24 shows us that the Lord owns everything, even all of the people on Earth. The Lord owns me and therefore, I must look to the Lord for counsel. Another passage shows us that the Lord owns all of the money.
How about that? The Lord owns all of the money. This idea of not owning anything is very foreign to anyone in America, because we have a society that is specifically based on property rights. Even though we have earthly property rights, we don't have heavenly property rights. The Lord gives us his money and we are to use this money in ways that would be pleasing to the Lord. Let's look at one more passage.
The Lord our God gives us the ability to produce wealth and the idea of wealth is the same as the idea of financial independence. Both of these will allow you do whatever you want whenever you reach that point in your life. As the Bible reminds us, we must not forget that the Lord gave us the ability to produce this wealth and he owns the money in our bank accounts. This mindset will give you peace. I have peace knowing that the Lord has placed me in this season of my life for a reason. All of us need to grow and become better people and the same applies to finances. It would not be smart for the Lord to just give everybody enough money. They would not learn how to work or learn how hard it was to build up that amount of wealth.
Recently, I have been listening to a podcast called "Chris Brown's True Stewardship." He works for Dave Ramsey and teaches many of the same principles as Dave. Daily, he talks about the importance of stewardship. I looked up the definition of stewardship, from vocabulary.com, it states, "Stewardship means the management or care of something, particularly the kind that works." Chris Brown is a former Pastor and he believes in the stewardship of money. Basically, this means handling the money that the Lord owns in God's way.
The idea of wealth, contentment and stewardship are all connected. The Lord helps us build wealth and he expects us to manage it in biblical ways. This expectation of stewarding the money in God's way gives us the contentment to just enjoy each season of life. The Lord will always be with and walk with you through you life experiences.
We all go through seasons of struggle with our money, especially if we are crawling out of debt. You have to understand that your worry will not change the numbers. They are what they are at that specific time. You may want to get out of debt faster or you may want to reach the financial summit faster. But you must understand that you have a plan and that plan is working, therefore find peace in the Lord that he will supply you with needs to build wealth as his word states.
Going back to my introduction, I was not content in the fact that we were saving about 50% of our income. I wanted it to be more. I was not content in what the Lord was giving us, but I was stewarding the Lord's money as he wanted. I needed to understand the importance of being content with your life and finances at that current time. I have a wonderful life, and make enough to save monthly, eat, and pay our bills. I am lucky and blessed that the Lord has provided so well for me. I should be thankful for all of this and be content with our current finances.