Managing your Blessings
Many of you have heard that if you read your bible, pray, are kind to others, and tithe that the Lord will bless you. The Lord does promise blessings for His children but be careful that you are seeking Him not what He can give you.
"The Lord promised me that He would always provide for me but I just never seem to have enough money for my bills!?"
A godly person not only reaches for God and accepts His blessings but learns how to manage and grow the blessings they are given.
In the Parable of the Talents, the master entrusts Talents (coins) to his servants while he is away and two of the three invest the money while the third buries it to keep it safe. The master is pleased with the first two for growing the wealth they had been given and was angry at the third for wasting his time.
When you get a paycheck what do you do with it? Do you plan ahead where your money goes each month or do you buy what you feel?
Most of the time* money issues are not that God did not provide the money for the month's bills but that you did not manage what was given to you. How many times have you eaten out this month when you could've made dinner at home? Was that amazon order really that important?
*(There are extenuating circumstances that could lead to not physically receiving enough money but the Lord provides in other ways through the church and other organizations that provide food and shelter to those in need.)
Creating and sticking to a budget is not just practical advice you heard from your high school teachers but a way to honor God through your actions.
Our church has gone through Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University and my family does use his EveryDollar budget app but it isn't necessary to use any outside tools if you have paper, pencil, and a bit of practicality.
Here is a good chart to get you started!
If your bills still total more than your income then do not be afraid to ask your church family for assistance, even if they cannot provide direct financial help they may be able to share food or a tank of gas.
If your bills are too far above your income it is time to reevaluate your values. Does Netflix truly count as essential? Do you need to cut back on putting money on your credit cards to catch up and get rid of the bill? Do you really need Wifi if you're paying for unlimited data on your phone too? Can you find a cheaper internet or phone plan until you can afford to upgrade again? Is there a service that would help cover medical costs/medicine for lower-income?
Make sure you are not valuing the "perfect home ideal" over the practicality of your situation.