Making a Home

You Need a Budget

“Now there is great gain in godliness with contentment, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content. But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.”

1 Timothy 6:6-10

“Without counsel plans fail, but with many advisers they succeed.” Proverbs 15:22

For most of our marriage, and up until a couple of years ago, my husband was self-employed. If you’ve been self-employed then you know that it means you don’t know what you’re going to make on any given day, week, or month. Because of this, I always felt like we couldn’t have a budget. Of course, now I know better. Although I always kept track and paid all of our bills, it wasn’t until last year that I started planning where our money was going to go. Giving assignments to our dollars has been immensely helpful, it’s what budgeting is all about.

Toward the end of 2014, after my husband had graduated college and a few months before the student loans were due to start, I had the opportunity to facilitate a Dave Ramsey class called “Financial Peace University“. It was eye-opening, and definitely changed the way I looked at money, budgets and spending.

Why do you need a budget?

“For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.” Luke 14:28-30

Having a budget allows us to plan for the future and upcoming expenses, and to know what our current financial situation is. It enables us to be a better steward of the money that God has given us, which we are called to do. Having a budget also allows us to save, invest, and give. Additionally, having a budget eliminates stress. You will know how much you need, and (hopefully) will have determined where extra funds will go.

I am still fairly new to budgeting and I am continuing to learn ways to improve. I think there are two main habits that you need to practice when budgeting, and they are self-discipline and trust. You have to stick within the boundaries of the budget that you have set up in order to make it work. You have to trust that God will provide all that you need, not necessarily all that you want or desire. This doesn’t mean that you won’t have challenges or even monkey-wrenches thrown in, messing up your budget (like medical bills!), but I think it’s especially important to have budgets for these particular times.

I’m currently switching over from two different budgeting forms, to Y.N.A.B, where everything is a more all-in-one approach. There are tons of great online budget forms, along with forms you can print out and write on. Some you will pay for and others are free. I encourage you to do a little searching and find out what will work best for you.

“And he said to them, “Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” Luke 12:15

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