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Budgeting is one of my favorite things to do! 

Yes, really. I love to steward our family’s income and put each dollar to work as best as I can. I have not only managed our budget throughout the years, but I’ve helped my friends and family with this too. 

As a young girl, my first memory of money management was my mom stashing money under her mattress. This system worked for her. She was able to pay all her expenses, save, and give money to her family in Peru. 

When I started earning my own income, I had to find the right financial formula for me.

I’ve learned many things throughout the years about debt, debt elimination, budgeting, saving, and giving, especially from God’s Word. I hope you get excited about the things I share and start your own journey.

Debt

As newlyweds, my husband and I decided to invest in several investment properties in addition to our single-family home. At the time, we thought this was a wise investment since properties typically go up in value, right? Wrong! The housing bubble burst and we (along with many others) were left with properties that were worth less than what we owed on them. Taking out interest-only loans wasn’t so wise. 

The rich rules over the poor, And the borrower is servant to the lender. Proverbs 22:7

Better not to vow than to vow and not pay. Ecclesiastes 5:5 

Debt Elimination

Several years ago, my husband and I took a class called Financial Peace University (FPU) through our church. It fine tuned our budgeting, spending, and savings strategies. We discovered how to quickly and  intentionally eliminate debt. We have applied these principles for years and are now debt free except for our properties.

Then she came and told the man of God. And he said, “Go, sell the oil and pay your debt; and you and your sons live on the rest.” 2 Kings 4:7

Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law. Romans 13:8

Budgeting

For many years, I was a single mom and lived within a budget to cover me and my son’s expenses. Creating a written budget was a good first step, but I lacked dedication. I would dip into savings for unexpected and even unnecessary expenses. After taking the FPU class, my husband and I shifted our mindset from “let’s get it now” to “it can wait,” which helped us accomplish our financial goals.. 

Our budget is ever-changing, so we look at it 1-2 times a month, making adjustments as needed.

Be diligent to know the state of your flocks, And attend to your herds; Proverbs 27:23

The plans of the diligent lead surely to plenty, But those of everyone who is hasty, surely to poverty. Proverbs 21:5

Saving

“It’s time for a bigger house.”
“I want to go to Florida next summer.”
“I want a new dress for that wedding coming up in November.”

In life, we all have financial goals…big and small. FPU teaches several steps to accomplish before setting a goal like the ones mentioned above. 

  1. Have an emergency fund. 
  2. Get out of debt (except for your home) 
  3. Have a 3-6 months of expenses in savings. 

Once you’ve accomplished this, the budget can be adjusted to make room for your financial goals.

In the house of the wise are stores of choice food and oil, but a foolish man devours all he has. Proverbs 21:20

On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something aside, storing up as he may prosper, that there be no collections when I come. 1 Corinthians 16:2

Giving

Giving is essential to the Christian life. God has intructed us to tithe 10% of our income and to bring it to “the storehouse,” our local church. In addition to the tithe, we are to give offerings to those in need. Because of this, giving are line items in our family’s budget. 

Intentionally setting aside funds to give to those in need is exciting!

And concerning the tithe of the herd or the flock, of whatever passes under the rod, the tenth one shall be holy to the Lord. Leviticus 27:32

You shall surely give to him, and your heart should not be grieved when you give to him, because for this thing the Lord your God will bless you in all your works and in all to which you put your hand. Deuteronomy 15:10

We have an amazing book available to us to be able to glean from…the Bible! 

Let His Word speak to you and let it encourage you to start walking towards financial freedom. Visit financial expert Dave Ramsey’s website, to find out how you can attend a Financial Peace University in your area. Also, feel free to click here for an Excel version of a sample budget for you to start with. I hope you are blessed by it.

How a budget has helped you and your family?

 


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Diana Jones is a compassionate wife, mother, grandmother and friend. She is passionate about sharing God's love and all that He has done throughout her life. She is also looking for opportunities to grow spiritually through reading, prayer, singing and being in fellowship with others. She is thankful for the opportunity share her stories here at Circles of Faith.

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