Do you ever wish you had more money? It’s time we start learning to be faithful in little, so we can eventually be trusted with more. Here’s how!
Have you ever thought about WHY you’re struggling financially?
Honestly, my basic train of thought has always been, “We either make too little or spend too much. Let’s just fix it!”
But, it’s never been that easy. And over the past several months, I’ve been convicted that there’s a spiritual component to our finances, as well, that I previously had not considered.
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In Luke 16, Jesus tells the parable of the shrewd manager – the one who cheats his rich boss and gets fired, but then is somehow commended for ingeniously making friends for himself by giving his boss’ debtors partial forgiveness on their debts. It’s not an easy story to understand, and in all the research I’ve done on this passage, I’ve come to the conclusion that there really is no consensus as to exactly what Jesus is trying to say.
However, Jesus does leave us with this gem of a life lesson in verse 10: “Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.” (NIV)
Other translations use the term “faithful,” instead of “can be trusted.” If you’ve seen any of my Facebook LIVE interviews from 2018, you may have seen a printable on the wall behind me that says, “Whoever is faithful in little will be faithful in much.”
That paraphrase of the verse has become my mantra this year.
I WANT to be faithful, even when it seems like we never have “enough.” Whether it’s enough money, enough space in our home, enough time, enough energy, or even enough health, I want to be faithful with what we have RIGHT NOW, so that I will be able to be trusted if and when God decides He wants to bless us with more.
If you would like to hang that printable in your own home as a reminder, you can grab it here!
The Long Road to Learning to Be Faithful in Little
Tell me if this scenario sounds familiar to you:
Balancing the budget is the bane of your existence. There never seems to be enough money for all the expenses that pop up, and your creative attempts to bring in more income seem to always fall flat.
BTW, if you’re looking for ways to make money from home, be sure to check out these posts:
Should You Try Working From Home?
WAHM Network Marketing: Is It for You?
WAHM Freelancing: Is THIS Gig Your Best Fit?
If you’re reading this post, I’m going to guess your hand is raised high just like mine. So, let me ask you this question: how are you managing your finances RIGHT NOW?
Yes, I know, there’s never enough to go around – believe me! But, do you know where your money is going before it’s gone? Do you have a solid budget and a way to direct your spending each month?
I laugh as I even ask the question, because I’m willing to bet you’re a lot like me. I HATED budgeting. I hated dealing with money in general (and still do), but it’s a necessary evil in this world, and I needed to figure it out!
But, it wasn’t an easy transition…
Failing at Financial Peace
So, soon after we got married, Erik & I took Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace course and determined to “gazelle intensity” our way into a better financial situation. However, we STRUGGLED with the cash envelope system. Entire $20 bills would mysteriously go missing and neither of us knew where. We could only get 20s out of the ATM, and we never seemed to make it to the bank during business hours to get change for the exact amount we needed in each envelope.
Honestly, it drove me absolutely batty. I hated feeling like a failure every single day because I couldn’t keep up with cash or do anything right with the envelope system — especially when it seemed like everyone else was having such success with it! So, I did what any good Melancholy-Choleric would do when faced with something I completely suck at…
I did ZERO budgeting for the entire next year.
In hindsight, it was not the smartest move I’ve ever made, but I was so burnt out on FAILING, it was easier to just try not to spend money at all and deal with the consequences later. Which ended up putting us in SERIOUS financial trouble when my husband’s position was cut and I was diagnosed with cancer. Such a scary time to be financially unstable!
Stressed to the max and completely freaking out about how we were going to stay afloat, I knew I HAD to find a better way to track and control our spending.
You Need A Budget — affectionately known as YNAB to those of us who love it — is a dandy little app that has saved our bacon both literally and figuratively over the past few years. (We REALLY love our bacon in this family! ??)
It allows us to use a zero-sum budget without having to mess with cash, lets both Erik and me to enter transactions from our phones right when we’re making a purchase (so we don’t forget later!), does all the math for us to keep track of how much we have left in each category in real time, and even lets us easily move money from one category to another if we have an unexpected expense (or if we spend too much on groceries that month… not that THAT ever happens… ?)
I cannot tell you how much I love this program!
YNAB has been the saving grace for our finances, and I finally feel like we’re gaining control. We even managed to buy a house recently and get all the things we needed for it (including three major appliances!) without going over budget! HUGE accomplishment right there!
A Bonus Blessing from YNAB
In reflecting on my financial background recently, I realized that I didn’t grow up having to think about money, which was a huge blessing, but it also meant I had NO idea how to be a financially responsible adult once I got out on my own. I didn’t know HOW to be faithful with the little money I was making. I just knew I shouldn’t spend more than I made. The bare-bones basics.
And it was embarrassing.
The biggest – and most unexpected – blessing I’ve gotten out of using YNAB is the confidence that I CAN make decisions about our money and how we spend it. I CAN be a “real” adult and be trusted with adult responsibilities.
Even if God never chooses to entrust us with more money than we have right now, *I* at least know I am being faithful with little and not squandering the precious resources we DO have!
Are YOU Being Faithful in Little?
So, let me ask you one last question: Are you ready to be faithful in little?
If our struggles with the cash envelope system sound familiar to you, do yourself a favor and check out YNAB! If you use my referral link, we both get one month FREE! (It’s only $5/month, but hey, when we’re being faithful with little, even saving $5 is a big deal! ?)
Regardless of what tool you choose, the important thing is to be faithful with the few financial resources you have right now, so both you and God will know you can be trusted with more in the future!
As a former University Resident Director, Career Counselor, Certified Personality Trainer, and high school Spanish teacher, Laura has quite the “scattered” background — with one underlying theme: education! She writes to teach and inspire women on topics related to faith, family, and lifework. She is also a resume writer, specializing in resumes for moms, career changers, and new graduates.