Sunday, August 3, 2008

Paper or Plastic?

In the myriad of activities that we participate in every year, we agree that it takes money for ministry to go forth. Many of us have financed ministry garments, travel, and lodging accommodations. Conference registrations and ministry outings can definitely claim a sizable portion of our funds. It is wonderful to invest our resources into the work of the Kingdom. If we are not wise, we can also incur a significant financial burden.

Planning in advance will allow us to have the maximum resources available to us. Purchasing airline tickets early can save hundreds of dollars in comparison to last-minute shopping. Conferences often offer early-bird registration rates to delegates who plan ahead. Deciding dates for garment purchases beforehand, or even purchasing garment separates in stages will allow everyone to get the needed items with the least amount of stress. A solid color garment with different overlays can be a great money-saver and add to the variety of our garment options.

If we find ourselves spending all of our money before the next payday and getting into debt, we must pray to the Lord regarding stewardship. Our bills at home should not go lacking while we are "going therefore into all the world." If we have credit card debt or owe people money, it is a good idea to pay it before we spend it elsewhere. Setting a personal and ministry budget will allow us to stay on task and operate with integrity. The Lord provides where He guides. There may be times when we have to postpone an idea or journey to set our houses in order.

2 Kings 4:7 (NKJV)
Then she came and told the man of God. And he said, “Go, sell the oil and pay your debt; and you and your sons live on the rest.”

Habakkuk 2:6-8 (NKJV)
“Will not all these take up a proverb against him, And a taunting riddle against him, and say, ‘ Woe to him who increases What is not his—how long? And to him who loads himself with many pledges’? Will not your creditors[b] rise up suddenly? Will they not awaken who oppress you? And you will become their booty.

Matthew 6:12 (NKJV)
And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

Luke 12:42 (NKJV)
And the Lord said, “Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his master will make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of food in due season?

Romans 13:8 (NKJV)
Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.

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