As Christians, we know we need money to live and should not live for money. But too many of us practice poor money habits and ignore scripture that guides us on having money for the causes we are passionate about or the rainy days that take us by surprise.
Here are four good habits Christians should practice when it comes to handling money.
Remember to Tithe
Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this," says the Lord Almighty, "and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. Malachi 3:10 NIV
Malachi 3:10 reminds us of the importance of tithing. Without this critical component, why would God bless our money if we don’t honor him in the tithe?
Some people ask whether you should tithe on the gross or the net. Also, it can get complicated if you have a business and you artificially pay yourself a lower salary yet receive perks that you expense through your company.
The basic answer is God cannot be mocked. The gross (first) 10% is what is called for in scripture. No one wants to have a final debate with God about his justification for tithing on what he receives.
The Early Saver Gets the Worm
Wealth gained hastily will dwindle, but whoever gathers little by little will increase it. Proverbs 13:11 ESV
The time value of money is discussed in Proverbs 13:11. Starting early can make your investments compound over time and allow you to use that money for strategic purposes. If you have children, start an investment account for them now.
Diversify, Diversify, Diversify
Invest in seven ventures, yes, in eight; you do not know what disaster may come upon the land. Ecclesiastes 11:2 NIV
The importance of diversification is recorded in Ecclesiastes 11:2. We should never put all of our eggs in one basket. A good guideline is to put no more than 10% of your net worth into a single investment.
Many people invest all or most of their savings in a few companies they think they know. But calamities happen. People don’t realize they are risking their future by not diversifying.
Keep an Eye on Your Money
Be sure you know the condition of your flocks, give careful attention to your herds; Proverbs 27:23 NIV
Proverbs 27:23 tells us to monitor our investments. If you haven’t logged into your account or don’t know your password, you are not keeping track of your investments. Don’t obsess over it but know what investments you own and why.
Practicing good money habits brings peace. And a peaceful mind is a clear mind that allows us as Christians to better fulfill our purpose for the cause of Christ.