Friday, October 24, 2014

Four Steps To Financially Savvy Kids

4 Steps to Financially Savvy Kids

In this day and age, we have lost the art of being financially responsible for the way we manage our money.  With the ability to get what we want, when we want, and pay for it later, we have dug a proverbial hole of disaster.  It’s still not too late to come out of that hole and win over your finances.  And you can prepare your kids so that they, too, can learn to never get to that same place.  Here are 4 things to think about when building financially savvy kids.

Step One:  Teach Your Child The Value of work

Every child needs to do things around the house just because they are a part of the family.  Having your child do chores is essential to learning to be responsible and contribute to the being part of the family.  There has always been debate about whether children should be paid for chores within the home, but actually an allowance can teach your children important lessons about finances and handling money to set them up to be successful later in life.  Create a chore chart for your child with a check off list for each day that they have completed that chore and let them know in advance how much they could potentially earn if they are FAITHFUL to complete that chore everyday.  Once they have earned that money at the end of the week, make sure they put that money in an envelope  where the real lesson of managing their money begins!

“In all the work you are doing, work the best you can.  Work as if you were doing it for the Lord, not for people.”  Colossians 3:23

Step Two:  Teach Your Child To Give

Now that they have worked hard and earned their money, it is time to teach them to give.  By teaching your child to give, you are teaching them the valuable lesson to not only think of themselves and what they will do with their money, but to also think of others.  The concept of giving is a hard lesson to understand, but when your child begins to give, they will reap the benefits of feeling good about themselves and hopefully become less selfish in the process.  Be an example to your child by cheerfully giving of your own money also.  Children follow our example and God’s work says over and over that He honors a giving heart and blesses us for doing so.  Start with giving 10% to your place of worship or ministry that blesses you.  You will see God is faithful to bless you for being a faithful and cheerful giver.

“God loves a cheerful giver.”  2 Corinthians 9:7

Step Three:  Teach Your Child about Saving

Once you’ve given to others, it’s time to look at what needs to be saved.  This is one of the most important steps in the financial learning process and usually where people go astray in becoming financially free.  Learning to save and buy things outright instead of getting then paying is a lesson in delayed gratification.  It’s most definitely a hard lesson to learn.  But if you will help your children to understand at an early age, not only will they appreciate their things more because THEY paid for it themselves, but they will be set free from the pattern later in life that leads to financial stress that will affect their relationships, bad decisions,  and where they end up for the rest of their lives!  Work with your child to figure out how much they need to save according to what they have left after giving and how much the item costs that they want to save for.  If an item is $12 and they have $4 left after giving, then 12/4=3.  It will take them 3 weeks of saving their money to earn that item.  Make a goal poster and place it somewhere within your child’s sight and mark off when they have accomplished a week closer to their goal.  Save the money for your child, so it doesn’t surprisingly get spent on something that wasn’t on the list of goals, but let them be in charge of where their money goes.  It is good for them to experience what happens to their money when they spend it on a whim also.  It teaches cause and effect, consequences, and starting over is not the end of the world.

“On the first day of every week, each one of you should put aside money as you have been blessed.  Save it up so you will not have to collect money after I come.”  I Corinthians 16:2

Step 4:  Teach Your Child about Spending

Now for the fun part of becoming financially savvy:  Spending!  Although this is the fun part, it also takes a lot of work to be wise with the money that your child has.  If your child has saved for a special item, don’t just run out and buy that item.  Help your child research that item and find the most efficient source of that item.  Perhaps that item is on sale at one store.  Perhaps there are sometimes coupons in the local paper for that item.  Perhaps you could find that item for cheaper by ordering it online or on a trade shop site.  Learning to be smart with your money is an important component to handling money.  Teaching your child to “look into first” will not only save them money, but also teaches them self control.  God wants us to be good stewards of the money we have and this is important to learn to be financially successful. 

“Keep your life free from the love of money, and be satisfied with what you have.”  Hebrews 13:5

If you would like to learn more about becoming financially savvy, there are many products available through Dave Ramsey’s website.  Be sure to check out these lifelines for you and your family today!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

I AM who I AM...

by Debi Baker

"13 Moses said to God, 'Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, 'The
God of your fathers has sent me to you,' and they ask me, 'What is his name?' 
Then what shall I tell them?'   14 God said to Moses, 'I am who I am. 
This is what you are to say to the Israelites: 'I am has sent me to you.'"
Exodus 3:13-14 NIV

The character of God is amazing!  In this particular passage, God is speaking with Moses through the burning bush.  God tells Moses to tell the Israelites that I AM has sent him to them.  
photo credit

I am.  In the original Hebrew, Yahweh.  

When we think of or describe who we are, there is always a describer behind the 'am.'  I am 'strong.'  I am 'short.'  In the case of God speaking with Moses, He simply says, I AM.  There is no describer behind the 'am.'  Why?  Because God needs no description. He is everything.  He is all things.  God didn't need to tell Moses that He was the All Knowing God.  He didn't need to tell Moses that He was the Light.  He just needed to tell Moses that I AM.  God is what He says He is.  God said to Moses, tell the Israelites that  I AM sent me to you!  

We go on to wonder why Moses asked God whom he should say had sent him.  Because in our finite, human minds, we have this inate 'need to know' about us.  Moses knew who God was but he needed a name to go along with what he knew.  God says He is who He says He is.  He says, "I AM."  God IS.  And that's the end of it.

Today, I challenge you to just revel in who God is.  Rest in the fact that He is who He says He is.  He needs no descriptor because He IS.

Have a blessed day.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Having Faith in God {24 Hours at a Time}

By: Shari A. Miller

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:34 (NIV)

God's been teaching me a valuable lesson these past few months.

He's been teaching me to have faith in him each and every day.

Various circumstances such as mounting medical bills, the high cost of medications, a week off work without pay due to illness, and hours being cut at my husband's work, have really caused us to tighten our purse strings, and dig down deep to see what were made of.

Let me tell you. It has not been easy.

I know I'm not the only one to walk this road. The only one to have problems in her life. 

However, I am here to say that it has taught me something new.

Through the frustration, through the times of being scared, he's peeling away layers of who I am a little at a time. 

He's peeling away the fear, peeling away the doubts, peeling away self. 

Day by day. A little at a time. I am learning. Learning lessons.

One day, the fear and angst may rise, and God guides me back into my place, telling me that worry is not the way. And the next day when trials hit me smack dab in the face, I'm learning to have faith in him instead. 

Each day, 24 hours at a time, I'm trusting him for our needs. I'm trusting him to provide for what we need and not necessarily what we want.

It's a process, and one that I am grateful for. Because he is molding me into his image. Molding me into who he wants me to be.

What about you? Has God placed you in a difficult season? What has he been teaching you? 

Remember the season won't last forever. Take it a day at a time. There's light at the end of the tunnel as you trust him 24 hours at a time.

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these."  Matthew 6:25-34 (ESV)

Photo Credit: Jyrki Salmi via photopin CC,

It is time for our Woman to Woman Word Filled Wednesday Link Up. We desire to connect women of God with one another and encourage each other in Christ. So grab a cup of coffee, sit back and visit a few blogs. Be encouraged and share your own stories in their comments.

Use the hashtag #w2wwordfilledwednesday! 

Three rules to this link up:
1. Must be a {Christian} faith post.
2. You must link back to W2W somewhere in your post.
3. You must visit and comment on at least one other blog in the link up.

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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

S'mores Cheesecake

Recipe courtesy of

By: Melissa Baker


  • 2-½ cups Graham Crackers Crumbs, Plus Extra For Optional Garnish
  • ½ cups Sugar
  • ¾ cups Melted Butter
  • 1 cup Miniature Marshmallows
  • ½ cups Warmed Hot Fudge Ice Cream Topping, Plus Extra For Optional Garnish
  • _____
  • 16 ounces, weight Cream Cheese
  • 14 ounces, fluid Sweetened, Condensed Milk
  • 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
  • 3 whole Eggs
  • 1 cup Miniature Chocolate Chips
  • 1-½ cup Miniature Marshmallows, Divided Use


In a small bowl, combine cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter. Stir until all combined. Pour into a 10-inch springform pan. Pat mixture up the sides and on the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle with 1 cup mini marshmallows then drizzle with fudge topping. Chill while preparing the cheesecake.
Combine cream cheese and condensed milk in a mixer on low speed until smooth. Add vanilla. Add eggs, one at a time, until blended, but do not over mix. Stir in chocolate chips and 1 cup of marshmallows. Pour over crust and bake at 325 degrees F for 45 minutes or until almost set. Sprinkle with an additional ½ cup of mini marshmallows and return to oven for about 5 minutes or until marshmallows are golden brown and puffed.
Cool on wire rack for 10 minutes then run a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen. Chill overnight then remove sides of pan. Just before serving, break up pieces of graham cracker and stick in the top, and then drizzle with more warmed fudge topping.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Pure Eyes, Clean Heart {Part 2}

*Warning: Today's subject has to do with p*rn. You may wish to not read with the little ones over your shoulder.

Last week we discussed how p*rnography hurts. This week we will continue our conversation...

The statistics are terrifying. Too many are struggling with this horrible evil known as p*rn. And sadly, too many think it's okay. We justify our sins by saying things like, all men do it, it's not actually touching someone, I know other Christians who do it and are okay with it, and the Bible doesn't say not to.  But all we are doing is making ourselves feel okay about the wrong we are doing.

Matthew 5:28 tells us, But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. Looking at p*rn is looking lustfully at a woman, therefore it is committing adultery according to the Word of God. 

Dealing in p*rn is also a self-control issue. We need to control our emotions, desires and urges. When we marry, we are fully committing to our spouse for life. This means when we have desires and urges s*xually, we need to control our self until we can turn to our spouse.

It all goes back to the heart. Are we seeking a closer relationship with God? If so, we need to remove anything that blocks our path to Him. P*rn definitely blocks the path to God.

Craig Ferguson says in his new book Pure Eyes, Clean Heart, "If I am going to lead my wife and kids, I must first allow myself to be led by God. It's not that I'm going to be sinless or never make a mistake. But I want to cultivate the desire to be pure and to live according to God's will, not my own cravings."

Pure eyes, clean heart. #porn is a horrible evil. One family shares their struggle of overcoming it. #pureeyescleanheart #pureeyes

Pure Eyes, Clean Heart is an amazing resource for any couple who has or is struggling with this addiction -or any addiction. Craig and Jennifer Ferguson share their own personal journey and real encouragement to break the chain of p*rnography. If you, your spouse or a friend is struggling, please check this book out. Let's break those chains and change those horrify statistics!