Lara O’Brien Sadowski is our guest writer today. She is a southern gal who loves all things writing, speaking, her family, and Jesus. Lara is a beautiful example of how the Lord has the power to bring purpose through our pain. Through writing and speaking, Lara shares her experiences with others to help them through their trials and shows them how the Lord can break any stronghold in their life. Visit her at The Journey of a Southern Gal.
I need to stop watching the news as much as I do. But sometimes I cannot help myself. I am a self-described “newshound,” and between the economy and the Middle East and that “little election” happening in November, I have had a non-stop deluge of important stories to fill my mind.
I would say that the economy is one of the single most important situations we are all facing today. Will I be laid off? Will my husband be laid off? What about our retirement? Will we have enough in his son’s college fund? Worrying has been a common denominator for me and my family, but one day I realized something I was leaving out of our economic equation. Or should I say someone? The Lord Jesus Christ. I was allowing worry to saturate me instead of taking my concerns to Him.
This down-turning economy affects everyone the same – including Christians. So I asked myself a very important question. As a Christian, how should I react to the economy? I knew that there had to be a better answer than worrying excessively over my family’s financial future. And there is. Trusting and planning.
Trust is first and foremost.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.” –Proverbs 3:5-6 (NASB)
The Lord is bigger than this economy. Every bit of it. He is big enough to handle it, and He does not need my help. Believe me, I have tried to interject, but to no avail. And if He is in charge (which He is), what do I have to fear? Satan knows that worrying is my Achilles heel, so he plays it up whenever possible. But the Lord always takes me back to Proverbs 3:5-6 – my life verses. I have nothing to fear because God is in charge of not only the whole world, but also my individual life. He loves me. He knows every hair on my head and on my family’s heads. And He knows that this is a precarious time in our history. Sometimes I feel like I am on that boat with Peter and the other disciples as the water is rocking the boat to and fro. The disciples were convinced that they were going to drown when, all of a sudden, Jesus appears, walking on the water. Peter goes to Him on the water and walks toward Him. When Peter took his eyes off Jesus, he began to sink. That message is loud and clear to me. Keep my eyes fixed on Jesus and believe that He is in charge of EVERY part of my life.
Make a plan.
“’For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.’” –Jeremiah 29:11 (NASB)
God’s plans are always good. Every single time. So my family and I have made a financial plan that is pleasing to God’s principles. We do not believe in debt, so we pay off our credit cards each month. We look at a big purchase, and if we cannot pay for it right away, we save for it and buy it later. My husband has been planning for his son’s college education since his son was a little boy, and we continue to add to it. We are planning for our retirement in great detail – investigating different investment opportunities so we can make the most we can off of what God has entrusted to us.
Bottom line – making a good financial plan is freeing. It takes away the worry about what might happen. We plan the best we can, and we leave everything in God’s hands. It is a good prescription for a topsy-turvy economy. Actually, it is a good prescription for life period.
Believe me, I have so many days where I wonder if I will be able to retire before I am 80. Will my stepson be in a good financial position, or will he be saddled with a horrible debt that our federal government continues to accumulate? Will my husband or I be laid off? Will we both be able to pay for any health issues that will come in the future? The Lord knows we have all of these questions, and He knows we all struggle with fear and doubt. But He reminds us every day that He is in charge and is mighty enough to handle and supply all of our needs. He loves us and wants to be the Lord of all of our lives – including the financial portion of our lives. We just need to make sound financial plans for us and our families and trust Him with the outcome.
He is huge. He is awesome. He is ever present. He is the Lord God Almighty. And He will never leave us nor forsake us.
What plans do you follow to shield yourself from a turbulent economy?