For our clients participating in Master’s Total Wealth Planning services, our values discernment exercise helps to identify each client’s five core life values. We have found that many of our clients have named Faith as one of their core values. Today’s blog post will discuss the impact that Faith can have on your financial planning decision-making process.
One of Webster’s definitions for faith is – “something that is believed with strong conviction: especially a system of religious beliefs.” For me personally, as well as for many of you who are reading this blog, faith is a deep belief in God, and the eternal blessing of having a saving relationship with Him through His Son, Jesus Christ. Those believing in this definition of faith will adhere to the truths found in scripture, sometimes defined as “a biblical worldview.”
One of the most important biblical worldview beliefs related to financial planning is that of stewardship. Simply put, stewardship means that God owns it all, and we should do the best we can, with the resources “we have been entrusted with.” This one core belief linked to our personal faith should dramatically affect the way we make financial decisions.
Instead of trying to elaborate on this topic further, I would like to share three common threads of “faith application” that I have observed through interactions with clients that have prioritized Faith throughout the years. I have found these observations to be very encouraging.
- Generosity has replaced Greed – Those making financial decisions with a biblical worldview will choose to re-direct their resources to effectively bless & meet the needs of others, instead of embracing the self-indulging lifestyle that culture tells us we somehow deserve. (Stay tuned for next week’s blog focusing on generosity.)
- Contentment has replaced Comparison – Comparison is a dangerous trap where I am looking at how my house, vehicles, vacations, or investment accumulation “stacks-up” against my friends, neighbors, or relatives. Contentment allows one to live with gratitude & the satisfaction that what I have today is a blessing and will more than meet my needs.
- Peace has replaced Fear – I will define peace as a “quiet confidence that I will do my best but trust the results and my future to a Sovereign Almighty God.” Watching our clients take this posture to eliminate fear has been inspirational! Their financial decision-making is not troubling, or burdensome.
I will close today’s blog post with a quote from Mr. Ron Blue. Lyle & I were meeting with Ron and a small group of financial advisors at a meeting in Atlanta almost 25 years ago. He said the following related to the application of faith & stewardship to one’s finances: “Many of us who are Christians say, God owns it all… but how many of us are regularly consulting Him before we make financial decisions?” Those of us naming Faith as one of our core values would benefit by applying this one principle, ask God for His help before making financial decisions!
How has your personal faith impacted your financial decision-making? Share those experiences with us. We would love to hear from you!