I bet tax time doesn’t make any top 1o favorite time of the year lists. Doing our taxes is more obligation than anything.
It’s not just tax time that is difficult when it comes to money. In most households “money” is a bad word. We don’t talk about it, or when we do, it causes a lot of stress.
I have heard the phrase, “use money as a tool”, and ” money is not good or evil”.
I agree with both. Yeah, easier said than done.
But how many of us view our money as a tool to further a mission? As a Christian, I view myself as the caretaker or money manager of the funds that come my way. I want to manage that money just as wisely as I expect my own financial planner to do with the money I invest with him.
When I think of it this way, I understand that all the money I have has been entrusted to me by the One who owns it all. And He asks me to use it to further His mission.
5 Ways to help you use money as a missional tool:
- First, get a handle on your finances. Not only know where your money is going, but as Dave Ramsey says, “Tell your money where to go.” Have a purpose for the money you make. If you have read my blog for any amount of time, you know that I suggest living below your means so that you have money to give. Lot’s of money, not just a small percentage.
- Determine where your passions lie. Ok, so you took heed to my suggestion to live below your means and you have cash sitting in an account waiting to be told where to go. Instead of reacting to appeals from all kinds of potentially worthy causes, decide where your passions are and give to those causes. Maybe its human trafficking or the work of a missionary friend, the homeless or the spread of audio versions of the Bible.
- Research the effect your money will have on the person or organization. You can give too much to one person or organization. It doesn’t matter if it’s a church, a missionary, or a non-profit, too much money in their coffers without them having a plan can do more harm than good. Don’t give blindly.
- Look for long-term significance. I blogged a few days ago about the difference between success and significance. I look at it as investing money into Kingdom opportunities. When done well, they long out-live me.
- Be careful about who gets the glory. Ask yourself, “Why am I giving this money?” Do you want recognition, a name on a building, a seat at the head table? Or, do you prefer that no one knows who gave the money, or if they do, they forget? We should remember that the intent is to further His mission and to bring Him glory. Besides it is Him that gives us the ability to accumulate money and wealth.
Learning to use money as a tool can help you live a life sent and centered on God’s mission. I bet if you apply some of these principles tax time will become less a burden and more of a joy as you plan how to use your money as a missional tool.