Should you seek great things for yourself? Seek them not! Jeremiah 45:5
Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist of the abundance of his possessions. Luke 12:15
(These verses must be read within their context.)
We have so much in America. Just to be born here really does ensure that we will have the freedom to pursue happiness. Benjamin Franklin says that “the U.S. constitution doesn’t guarantee happiness, only the pursuit of it. You have to catch up with it yourself.”
The first step of being financial freedom is to live within your means. Every family needs to live within a budget, and spend less each month than they take in. It was helpful for Robin and me to go on the envelope system. We decided what the 6-7 budget items were each month, and we put that much cash into the envelopes. When the entertainment envelope was empty, no more entertainment that month.
Long time Young Life staffer Neil Atkinson wrote a good book about living the frugal lifestyle called The Shrewd Christian. The sub-title is You can’t have it all, but you can have more than enough. I just went to eBay and found 9 copies starting from $1.00. The introduction begins, “This book is for the Christian middle-class. I am one of you. We need this book.” It is witty, well written, and practical. I especially like his chapter on buying a ‘new’ car.
Once you start spending less than you make, then you are ready to start saving. Pay yourself first will be my next post.
Please comment on this thought: Does a budget limit your freedom or give you freedom?
Does a lighthouse limit a sailor’s freedom?