A Bodey in Motion

Building momentum, one step at a time

Quick Hits: Give responsibly. Shut down the negative voice. Ethiopian kids with tablets.

  • No boogeymen here. That old tree sure casts a funny shadow though, doesn't it?One of the benefits to getting your finances under control is the opportunity to give generously. However, your giving is a resource that needs to be managed, too. You can’t just give to every organization with their hand out without checking them out first. Tony Morgan recently published a list of ten things that people will want to know before they will give to your church, but I think you can turn them around to make great guidelines for the giver to use before donating to any charitable organization. How will your giving make a difference? How will the resources you give be used? What is the vision of the organization? How can you get further involved? How transparent is the organization? Don’t give blindly.
  • Pessimism has always tempted me. Out loud, I’d use the word “realist” but, deep down, I had made Murphy my patron saint. It’s taken a lot of work to change my mindset, and to recognize, by and large, our world and my life just keep getting better, not worse. The biggest part of that has been to shut down that fear-filled, negative voice before it can convince me otherwise. Give yourself a chance to see what’s good around you. There aren’t boogeymen around every corner.
  • How’s this for an education experiment? The One Laptop Per Child project wanted figure out ways to encourage the children of countries with little or no education infrastructure to start teaching themselves. So, they delivered some boxes of tablets to two villages in Ethiopia, taped shut, with no instructions whatsoever. Within five months, the children had begun to learn English and even circumvented some of the security settings on the tablets. How could we implement something like that here in America? Education has to get beyond memorizing facts and procedures, and move on to inspiring children to constantly be learning.
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October 5, 2013 Posted by | Quick Hits and Links | , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Quick Hits: Give responsibly. Shut down the negative voice. Ethiopian kids with tablets.

FPU Lesson 9 – The Great Misunderstanding

This is the lesson that makes all of the difference. You can do everything covered up to this point, and it’ll work, but you won’t be half as successful as you could have been. How can generosity possibly play a part in building wealth? Below are my notes from the lesson, including the key points that I highlight from the video when leading the class, and some supplemental material that I think could help the class go further on this topic.

Financial Peace Unversity

Lesson 9, The Great Misunderstanding

Key Points

The great misunderstanding is that we believe the way to have more money is to hold on to what we have tightly. The truth is that it’s just the opposite. When we hold our money with an open hand, instead of a closed fist, it’s able to flow out and in more freely. Generosity is a tool for wealth building.

We are not owners. We are only managers. We’re stewards. This is the hardest thing for us to accept. Everything we have is there for us tend, cultivate and grow, but not for ourselves.

Giving makes us more Christ-like. God is a giver. A spiritually mature Christian gives. If you have dedicated your life to following Jesus, but you’re not generous with what you’ve been given, you’ve missed something.

Challenges

The Parable of the Talents. From Matthew 25, and it has become one of my favorite passages. It covers the major points of how we need to approach money:

  1. Everyone is given something, each according to their ability. There isn’t any room for envy. We each have what we can manage.
  2. Grow what you’re given, no matter how small. Don’t bury it.
  3. Be ready to give it all back to the one who gave it to you.
  4. Being responsible with what you’re given right now prepares you for more in the future. In the end, how you grow what you’ve been given reflects on how you are growing. We all want to hear “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

This is only the beginning. You might still have months (or years) to go before you’ll see huge progress. Remember that you’re trying to be the tortoise, not the hare. Be committed to continue educating yourself about money. Read at least one financial book every year.

May 1, 2013 Posted by | Christ and Church, Past and Future, Work and Money | , , , , , , | Comments Off on FPU Lesson 9 – The Great Misunderstanding

Quick Hits of the Week

  • Life can be very hard. Right now, many of us can find valid reasons to complain about the world around us and its effect on our lives. The economy is weak. Unemployment is rampant. National leadership is easy to question. Conflicts abound abroad and at home. Fear and depression can easily be the emotions of the moment, moment after moment, day after day, on and on. There’s a problem with that, though. We were made to be better. We’re not supposed to spend our moments complaining out of fear and worry. We have the gifts of hope and vision, and we need to remind ourselves of them, especially when life is very hard.
  • Christmas is a great time of year, because almost everyone thinks just a little bit more about generosity and charity. Here are a couple of opportunities that you might want to take advantage of. First, Jon Acuff wants to help fight poverty by providing goats to the poor through Food for the Hungry. If you’re looking for something a bit more personal, though, I’ve got just the thing. GoFundMe.com is a crowdsourcing site for personal projects and life events. It’s like KickStarter, but for things like weddings, memorial funds, babies, pretty much everything. I’m not endorsing any of the projects on there, but I am encouraging you to go look around and see if you can’t find an opportunity to be generous to someone you don’t know.
  • I’ve been struggling with keeping a steady income with my current job, and developing a new career around financial coaching. I want the latter, but the former pays the bills really well. That’s why Seth Godin nailed me with this post. Whichever of those two is getting my best energy is the one that’s going to flourish. If I say I’m taking the new career seriously, then my time, energy, and focus need to reflect that.

Is there something valuable or important or cool or funny or weird or awesome out there I missed this week? I can’t hit it all, but you should let me know about it by dropping me a line or sharing it in the comments below! I’d appreciate the heads up.

December 27, 2012 Posted by | Quick Hits and Links | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Quick Hits of the Week

Quick Hits of the Week

  • I am always surprised when I hear the statistics about giving among Christians. It’s well known that people working in ministry are, in a majority of cases, underpaid. Christians are called to be generous, emulating the gift that was given to us by Christ. Our family tithes and gives as much as we feel called to, because we want our church to be able to pay our pastors well, and we want there to be margin for helping the people in our community who have difficulty providing for themselves. Now, there is some debate over whether or not pastors should depend on the financial support of the church, but I think the argument for is fairly strong. If you don’t that’s your choice, but I’m wondering how you live generously.
  • We like to measure our success, no matter how we endeavor. One of the problems with that is the way we measure our success will have an effect on how we try to achieve it. Sometimes we’re just measuring the wrong things. For example, in education: if the goal is children who love learning, are test scores the best way to measure that?
  • Alright. I’m not condoning fighting a house fire with a garden hose. I don’t actually think that it would be effective. However, faced with the possibility that a neighborhood fire might spread to my property, and no firefighters in sight, I might try something drastic to slow the oncoming destruction. It would be incredibly unwise for me to do so against the explicit order of a police officer, too, but I would expect at least a couple of verbal warnings before they’d resort to whipping out a Tazer and shooting me with it to stop me. What do you think?
  • Part of the problem that our garden hose wielder was running into was the fear of what might happen. The police couldn’t risk him even trying to stave off the flames, because if he were hurt or killed, they would likely receive some blame. We live in a society that more and more tells us that if we can do something to reduce a risk we should do it, no matter the cost, or the limiting freedom. Every time somebody dies in a tragedy, somebody is to blame.

Is there something valuable or important or cool or funny or weird or awesome out there I missed this week? I can’t hit it all, but you should let me know about it by dropping me a line or sharing it in the comments below! I’d appreciate the heads up.

November 15, 2012 Posted by | Quick Hits and Links | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Quick Hits of the Week