Welcome to the “God’s Financial Promises for You” series. We will discuss biblical principles with common-sense advice to help you gain financial security, financial independence, and peace of mind. Today, we will unpack the principal of Living a Life According to God’s Wisdom.
Principal #1: Living According to God’s Wisdom
God’s Word on Wisdom
- Blessed is the man who finds wisdom, the man who gains understanding. Proverbs 3:13
- But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and all will be given to him. James 1:5
- Wise men store up knowledge, but the mouth of a fool invites ruin. Proverbs 10:14
- He who walks with the wise grows wise. Proverbs 13:20
- Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens. Daniel 12:3
Isn’t it comforting to know that God’s will for us is to become wiser and more knowledgeable in matters of finance? I give thanks to God that all I must do is ask Him for wisdom when I feel I’m lacking. The Bible tells me that when I ask Him for wisdom, that God gives it to me generously [i]. It is also interesting to note that the opposite of “wisdom” is “foolishness”. The previous verse you read clearly states that foolishness invites ruin [ii]. Have you ever found yourself in financial ruin? What decision(s) lead you there?
We praise God that you have taken the first step in uncovering God’s Financial Promises for You. Whatever financial mistakes you’ve made in the past, be assured that you no longer should make those same mistakes again!
According to Forbes.com, (link below); here are 10 Common Foolish Financial Decisions You Don’t Want to Make: [iii]
- Spending money on things you don’t need to impress people you don’t like. Don’t try to keep up with the Jones es because you will also have to keep up with the Jones es’ credit card debt.
- Dealing with old debts first. The delinquency may be old enough that it’s past your statute of limitations and the creditor can no longer sue you for it. If the delinquency is over 7 years old, it should have dropped off your credit report.
- Paying for credit monitoring. You can get free credit monitoring on sites like Credit Karma and Credit Sesame and get alerted if anything funky happens to your credit. You can check your credit report for free at http://www.annualcreditreport.com and dispute anything funky from the past.
- Using “average” assumptions in your retirement planning. The problem with using average rates of return on your investments and an average life expectancy is that there’s a good chance you might earn less than average or live longer than average.
- Being recklessly conservative with long term investments. They may think you’re not taking risks, but you are taking one of the biggest risks of all: seeing the real value of your money not keep pace with inflation and not having enough money to retire on.
- Having too much money in one stock. It is a good idea to have no more than 10-15% at most of your portfolio in any one stock. This is especially true if that one stock is your employer since you don’t want to be out of a job and a good bulk of you nest egg at the same time.
- Chasing Investing Returns. Studies have shown that top performing funds are no more likely than average to outperform in the future.
- Bailing out of stocks while they are low. Make sure your portfolio matches your risk tolerance.
- Investing in high-cost mutual funds. Studies have shown cost to be the biggest predictor of superior returns when comparing similar mutual funds.
- Cashing out a retirement account frivolously. Unless you’re in a dire emergency, it’s probably not a good idea to raid your retirement account before you retire. Not only do you have to pay taxes on traditional retirement account withdrawals at your current marginal rate, but you may also have to pay a 10% penalty if you’re under age 59 1/2 and you lose all the future growth you would have earned.
Achieving financial security is a matter of applying God’s wisdom to everyday life. We recognize that this type of wisdom can sometimes seem unrealistic. Why? Because we are imperfect beings living in a temptation-filled world. What sets financially secure people apart from the rest of the crowd? They apply God’s wisdom to everyday life, especially when it comes to financial matters. We hope you have enjoyed this teaching. Stay tuned for more financial promises for you, straight from God!
Radiant Ministries is founded by Cecilia Silva. Radiant Ministries exists to connect you to the Word of God in such a way that God’s light shines through you. We fulfill our mission statement by making God’s word easy to understand and easy to apply to everyday life. Cecilia is a licensed life insurance agent with Primerica Financial Services. Find out more about Primerica by visiting www.primerica.com
Cecilia can be reached via email: Cecilia@radiantministriesonline.com. You may also contact her via email for speaking engagements. Cecilia has extensive experience in the ministry and is a student at B.H. Carroll Theological Institute pursing a degree in Christian Education.
[i] James 1:5 NASB
[ii] Proverbs 10:14