Monday, November 25, 2013

Jesus Christ CPA

Having trouble with your finances? I debt and can't figure out a way to fix it? What's the logical thing to do? Write to a religious advice column of course! Wait... what?
Seek God's guidance to straighten out finances

DEAR BILLY GRAHAM: I thought our money problems would go away as time passed, but they haven’t. Thankfully we both have jobs, but we still can’t seem to get out of debt. I know this isn’t a spiritual question, but would you have any advice? — K.D.
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DEAR K.D.: Let me assure you that God is concerned about every area of our lives, including our finances. In fact, you’d probably be surprised how often the Bible talks about money and our responsibility to use it wisely.
I’m sure almost any financial adviser would give you the same advice I would: Put down your income and your expenses on a sheet of paper, then prepare a balanced budget you can live with. That will probably mean cutting out some expenses you wish you could keep, but you’ll never overcome your debts until you do. Develop a realistic budget, then stick to it, regardless of the inconvenience.

The real question you must face, however, is this: What place does money have in your lives? Is it more important to you than God? I know that’s a blunt question, but most of us have become too concerned with material things, and we could live far simpler than we actually do. Jesus warned, “You cannot serve both God and money” (Luke 16:13).

This is why the most important thing you can do is put Christ at the center of your lives, including your finances. God has blessed you in many ways; almost every day I get a letter from someone who’s without a job or struggling far more than you are. Thank God for all he has given you, then ask him to help you not only live within your income, but also to use your money wisely and for his glory.

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 This is one of those rare cases where Billy Graham actually starts out by offering sound advice. If you are having money issues, the smart thing to do is to figure out exactly how much money you have coming in, then make a list of where it is all going. By doing this, you may find areas that you can trim back, or eliminate entirely. Maybe the answer is eating out less. Maybe they have an expensive cable TV package they can do without. Maybe the grocery bill can be cut back by buying more store-brand items. Have a gym membership you rarely use? There are all kinds of ways that one
can save money. We don't know how much debt KD is in, so there's no way of knowing if big or small changes are needed. But there likely are areas that can be trimmed back.

Then Graham decides that's enough good advice for this month, so lets blather on about some nonsense... Is money more important to KD than God? Probably not. KD is writing a religious advice column about a financial matter. So it's fairly likely that KD holds his belief very near the top of the list of his concerns.

And what of the line about 'using your money for the glory of God'? Does this mean giving to your church? Because that would be one of the first things I'd suggest cutting in household budget. When you can't make ends meet, you need to cut unnecessary expenses. Handing the church a sometimes considerable chunk of your earnings is an unnecessary expense. I know that when I was a believer, it was expected that you give a minimum of 10% of your income to the church. I don't know where KD or his wife work, but I'm sure that 10% more income would make a world of difference.

-Brain Hulk

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