By Mary Jo Lyons, CFP®
A friend recently asked me “exactly how does the Bible address financial planning and investment management principles?” I provided a short summary of the principles below but my response was not as polished as it should have been. I vowed to be able to answer this in a more thoughtful and concise way going forward. As both a Certified Kingdom Adviser® and a Certified Financial Planner™ Practitioner this message should be muscle memory. Off I went to do a little research. I know it’s in there!
Good financial advice has its roots in Biblical Wisdom. Money is one way we work out our belief system: values, goals and priorities, thus financial advice really is spiritual advice. The reason we stress financial stability is to encourage folks to become better stewards of their God given resources.
There are actually 2,350 passages in the Bible dealing with money and money management. Check out the Education Center on our website www.ciswealth.com for a list of Bible verses that provide scriptural guidelines for handling money. You will find passages on ownership, tithing, giving, debt, saving, investment, honesty and best of all, seeking wise counsel. Two of my favorites:
The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it, the world and all who live in it…
Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisors they succeed.
The Bible provides many answers but also poses many questions including this one: Do you believe God owns it all? See the answer above from Psalm 24:1. In the Bible God has provided us with 6 transcendent planning principles and 5 observable Symptoms of Stewardship:
Transcendent Planning Principles
- Spend less than you earn | Proverbs 13:11
- Avoid the use of debt | Proverbs 22:7
- Build Reserves or Margin | Proverbs 6:6-8
- Set Long-Term Goals | Philippians 3:14
- Develop & maintain an eternal perspective | Psalm 24
- Rejoice in generosity | II Corinthians 8:9-11
Observable Symptoms Of Stewardship
- Giving in proportion to income
- Living a controlled debt free lifestyle
- Taxes are paid with integrity and thanksgiving
- Husbands and wives set financial goals together
To help you look at your own financial situation check out “The Four Hs of Financial Wisdom”. Give us a call at (830) 609-6986 to request your free copy. Rooted in Scripture and focused on helping you live as a steward of God’s resources, this tool will help you assess where you are today and encourage you to live out biblical principles in your finances tomorrow. The four H’s include Heart, Health, Habits and Hope.
This one page document is a great tool available to us in our work as Kingdom Advisors and made available from our partners at the Ron Blue Institute. Take a few minutes to complete this exercise. Consider doing it together with your significant other, if married or in a committed relationship. We encourage you to spend time in prayer as you think about the changes that you may need to make. If you are already doing these things then be grateful that you are on the right track and pray for continued discipline and focus.
Dr. David Jeremiah was quoted for saying “Contentment is looking back without regret, looking at the present without envy and looking at the future without fear.”
Financial contentment can only come when couples work together in spousal unity. They share a “theirs” rather than a “his and hers” mentality and agree it’s better to have more cash flow than more stuff. Working with a trusted financial advisor can help you be accountable to a long term plan.
God wants us to be content. His word tells us so:
Satisfied to the point of where I am not disturbed or disquieted. – Philippians 4:11
Let your character or moral disposition be free from love of money. – Hebrews 13:5
A sense of inward sufficiency. – 1 Timothy 6:6
If you are looking for wise counsel to help organize your financial life in a way that is consistent with your faith, we are here to help.