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Summary: Practical sermon on wise financial practices.

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WAYS TO AVOID FINANCIAL MELTDOWN

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Pastor Brian Matherlee

John and Jane are my friends. Years ago I was able to learn from their story.

1. Be content

a. The Commandment that saves us from financial ruin is the 10th Commandment, “Do not covet”.

b. We are bombarded by a culture that says, “More, more, more”!

c. Hebrews 13:5, “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’”

d. When we trust God we learn to be content in life.

2. Be cautious about the yoke of debt

a. Larry Burkett writes in his book “Debt Free Living” that debt is “not normal” and that is really enslaves us.

b. The Bible tells us in Romans 13:8, “Let no debt remain outstanding except the continuing debt to love one another.”

c. Larry Burkett writes about this verse in his book “Debt Free Living”. He says:

i. Debt enslaves us (pg. 53)

ii. Borrowing is permitted with these guidelines (pgs. 57-60)

1. Recognize it isn’t the normal avenue of obtaining things (in the case of a house and other very expensive necessities, it is understandable)

2. Don’t tie yourself up forever (fixed rates only)

3. Have a way to repay

4. You have an absolute commitment to repay (God doesn’t smile upon those who don’t repay debts.

d. God understood the downward spiral debt laden society would have on itself and therefore instituted laws that every seven years and every 50 (the year of Jubilee) the Israelites were to cancel debts. They didn’t follow the Lord’s directive and we aren’t anywhere near that kind of structure. It may seem to be a redistribution of wealth but in effect is simply lifts burdens that people can then be more productive. Call it what you want but it is God’s economic policy and I’m sure He knows what He’s doing.

3. Earn all you can, save all you can, give all you can

Throughout Scripture we see these principles honored by the Lord

a. Earn all you can (Parable of the talents)

b. Save all you can (Proverbs 6:7-11)

c. Give all you can (2 Corinthians 9:6-11)

TOP TEN MONEY MANAGEMENT SKILLS

Will Fulbright helped me to compile these skills.

1. Have a plan to identify your goals and develop a plan to achieve those goals.

a. Thomas Jefferson said it best, “Don’t spend more that you make.”

2. Have a budget to identify waste and look for opportunities to identify savings.

3. Track your spending (even little things).

4. Tithe (if you’re a Christian)

5. Have an emergency reserve. This should equal 6 months worth of expenses. 3 months is an ok start. You hope you never need this; it is there in case of emergency. Leave this in an FDIC savings account.

a. The number one emergency in our culture today that bankrupts people is health.

b. Take care of your self, see the doctor, keep up with insurance & medicine.

6. Set up savings as an automatic draft. That way you don’t realize you are even doing it.

7. Save smart (if your company does not have a 401K) or your income is under the IRS limits (use the Roth and regular IRAs)


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