The first key to financial peace is Discernment. In church on Sunday I heard a pastor say that some people feel distant from God. Why is that? It’s because some people don’t read their Bible or pray. Then those people look around and see others who seem to have their act together and they wonder, “Why can’t I be like that? There must be some big secret I don’t know.” When I consider the times I have strayed, it is usually when I think I know everything and I become proud. There is no big secret. To be close to God you need to read your Bible and pray every day and throughout the day.
It is the same with finances. You need to do the basics first. Then you get the rewards. Unfortunately, many people in the U.S. have tried to take the rewards without doing the basics first. In our U.S. culture, or any capitalist, free market economy, you will be tempted to purchase many things. However, the person who lives in financial peace exercises discernment in spending. There is no big secret. Don’t buy everything you want. Advertisers spend billions of dollars a year to maximize the force of commercials and billboards to manipulate consumers with psychology and marketing in order to get you to want something. Then all they do is provide you with the desires of your heart.
Just use discernment. Ask yourself, “Is this in the budget? Even if it is in the budget, ask yourself, “How much do I really need this in comparison to my other financial goals?” For example, when I was a kid I wanted Legos for Christmas but I got Lock Blocks instead. Why? Same thing. Cheaper.
Watch for my next post to find out more about discernment and my second key to financial peace…