Hope for your financial life and beyond

Successful Relationships Bring Financial Success (Part I)

couple arguingThe Bible is full of relationship issues.

In the first 13 chapters of Genesis alone we see a man who can’t say “no” to a woman when offered a piece of fruit; the murder of a sibling; a man deciding it was OK to marry more than one wife; humanity’s spiritual relationship with God being so strained that man is wiped off the earth (save for Noah and his family); and two relatives quarreling over land use for their livestock.

Ugh…What a mess! In the words of Jerry Seinfeld, “People…they’re the worst.”

Relationships with those around us are challenging enough and adding money issues to the equation can bring a whole new level of tension. Improperly managed relationships are financial dream killers. They can scuttle any hopes of building wealth.

Some Unhealthy Relationships

Any of these sound familiar?

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Count the Cost: Stick to the Plan to Win (Part 3 – Luke 14:28)

All of us want to finish our lives with honor and dignity. We want to look back over the years that we have been privileged to live hear on earth with a sense of pride, accomplishment and satisfaction that our lives have been well spent. We want to have reached our goals and contributed in some small way to the lives of those around us. We want to have been winners at life.

Wasn’t that the goal of the builder in Luke 14:28?

He wanted to win by finishing his tower. And he knew that weighing the costs of the project ahead of time in some serious get-down-to-business strategic planning sessions was going to help him accomplish his objective.

The point of the verse is about planning but the goal was to finish. What does “finishing” look like in regards to finances?

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Count the Cost: Find a Plan to Win (Part 2 – Luke 14:28)

George Bailey is beside himself at the prospects of living here.

Recently, a few miles from where I live, a house was sold for a minor sum of money after sitting vacant for years. The buyer, instead of choosing to live in the property, had the house bulldozed to the ground. Now this doesn’t seem like that uncommon of a thing to have happen to a property. After all, you have to make way for new construction, right?

The irony of the situation, however, is that it was new construction the buyer had leveled…well, at least it was new 7 years ago when they started building this beautiful, upper six-figure mansion of a house on a perfect, 5-acre corner lot of country land. No one had ever lived in that house. The original owner/builder only managed to get it about 75% completed.

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Count the Cost: Follow a Plan to Win (Part 1- Luke 14:28)

In Luke 14:25-33, Jesus is encouraging his followers to count the great personal cost it will take for each of them to truly be his disciple. He is trying to explain that in the very near future he is going to be crucified and in order for them to follow him to his death, they must be willing to die themselves. They would have to forsake everything (including family) in order to make this type of commitment to Jesus.

In order to get his point across, He uses two incredible examples that show how planning ahead of time can lead to a successful outcome.

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Giving is Part of Our Nature

I love Christmas! Always have. As a young child, it meant a trip to my grandparents’ house in Indiana for a week with the extended family – grandma and grandpa, mom, dad, aunts, uncles, and cousins all crammed together in the same house. Now, I’m sure for some out there this is the last thing you would ever want to be forced into doing, and the mere thought of it is stirring memories and images you’d rather not dwell on.

But for me, it was as close to nirvana as I could come. This was mostly because things were so different from the normal routine…

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The Earth Is God’s and I Am His Steward

seagulls saying "Mine, Mine!"

This is the first post in the “Core Concept” series.

My wife and I have the privilege of raising four great kids. At the time of this writing they range in age from pre-kindergarten to 6th grade. So, for all you parents out there, you can imagine the kid dynamics that take place in our home.

Through my years of parenting, it has been interesting to watch how the children form relationships with each other (and others), get into and solve conflicts, play together, handle disappointment and react to the demands of their parents’ life. Each one is so different from the other it makes it hard to believe they came from the same set of parents. I have noticed, however, they do have at least one thing in common…

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