‘One person gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.’
Proverbs 11:24 NIV
It’s important for us to have a balance between spending and saving our money. If we’re always spending, then we’re not wisely preparing for our future. If we’re always saving, we’re not using the money we have to be generous to others, or to enjoy life now. So let’s start by looking at spending. It’s a good idea to regularly review how much money we’re spending, and what we’re spending it on. While the Bible doesn’t have lots of specifics about how we should spend money, it does give us a few guidelines to follow: 1) Be generous. We’re told, ‘do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased’ (Hebrews 13:16 NIV). God doesn’t want us to only spend our money on ourselves. We can give to charity and we can share with people who are struggling financially. 2) Tithe. The principle of tithing is to give a portion of our income to the church. Some people feel uncomfortable with this principle, but what God is basically asking is that we use some of our money to help build His kingdom. By giving some back we recognise that it was a gift from God, and it’s an expression of our gratitude to Him. 3) Give cheerfully. In 2 Corinthians, we’re told: ‘Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver’ (9:7 NIV). God’s interested in our hearts. So if we’re just giving money away because we feel like we have to, or because we think God will bless us if we do, then our hearts aren’t in the right place. We need to be giving because we want to bless others, and to show our gratitude to God. What Now? Take some time to go through your expenditure for the last month. What are you spending the most money on? Are you being generous to others? Would you feel comfortable telling God what you’ve spent your money on?