Jeff Bartell

A "bottom line" kind of guy

Live within your means, Invest in things that matter

This is a great philosophy of life.  Many of our worries in life come from some financial stress.  While there are very definite challenges out there these days, I want to suggest that most of us could do a better job of making good financial choices.  This blog post is not intended to list or debate which are the better choices, but simply to stimulate your thinking about the things you spend money on.  I know that in my family we often walk up and down the aisles of stores and put things in the shopping cart that we don’t really need, simply because we “can afford it.”  Then later, I am surprised when other expenses pop up which cause stress trying to figure out how to pay for them.  What if we all took a step back and got a better “big picture” view of our financial choices?  “Living within our means” is just what it says:  living within OUR means – not our neighbor’s means.  When we do that, maybe we will have more available to …

Invest in things that matter!  What “matters” to you?  It’s a fair question.  Not everyone values the same things.  Whatever you value, wouldn’t it be nice to be able to invest more in that?  Understandably, I am biased.  I believe that there is no greater investment than in the Kingdom of God.  Your investment there pays dividends in eternity.  You can never go wrong doing that.  You cannot give more to God than God will return to you (whether in this life or in the life to come).  So on a strictly financial level, can we look harder at our daily, weekly, monthly spending patterns and adjust so as to be able to invest more in God’s kingdom?

I am a missionary – not only in practice, but in heart.  I believe deeply in participating in God’s Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20).  God has blessed us here in North America with excess.  I believe it is for a reason – to be able to invest in things that matter.  Career foreign missionaries give their lives, comfort and relationships to serve the Lord in a remote location.  We have the privilege of partnering with them.  Some take their vacations from work to serve on a short-term mission trip.  Others can’t get the time away to do such a thing.  If you can’t GO – could you GIVE?  A person who goes on a short-term trip gives a week of their lives to serve the Lord and learn more about His heart and mission.  If you can’t go yourself, could you give a week’s salary to send those that do go?  This is a great idea and I am thankful for the friend that suggested it!

Everyone is in a unique place in their walk with the Lord, with their personal finances and with their time commitments.  Regardless of where you are personally, it can’t hurt to apply the philosophy: “Live within your means and invest in things that matter.”

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Comments: 4

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Couldn’t agree with you more. Dave and I have accumulated so much worthless ‘stuff’ over the years. We have always invested in God’s work, but perhaps we could have done more. I know we could have done more.

 
 

Thanks for the reminder and challenge — I agree we could definitely do a better job managing God’s money . . . too often I forget and think it’s mine! Probably a good idea to invest HIS money in the things that matter most to HIM — right?

 
 

Jeff, If you get this, I would like to ask you some questions about Albania. Mostly about how to best encourage and support a World Vision Sponsored child in Triana.

And thanks for the blog, I am really enjoying it.

Bob

 
 

Sure Bob! Ask whatever you like. I’ll try to help.

I’m glad you have enjoyed the blog.

Jeff

 
 

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