What is your income? How much debt do you have? Do you save a percentage of your salary each month? What does your budget (or non-budget) look like? How much money did you spend on that? Is that a wise financial decision?
Pair that with being the kid of a nurse, and nobody will want to have me over for dinner. I also don't know where to stop with medical questions (bowel movements, family health history, pain, etc.).
I come from a fairly thrifty middle class family, mostly attributed to my three grandparents who lived through the Great Depression and my remaining grandparent (lovely Oma) who survived the horrors and aftermath of WWII. Money was rarely abundant for them in the earlier days of their marriages. My parents naturally inherited a thrifty lifestyle, and it also has been passed to my sisters and me. So working for a financial investor who has clients with almost more money than God, it's been an interesting shift.
I've seen how money can be hoarded. I've seen how families can be financially ruined by children who choose the path of alcoholism and substance abuse. I've seen a very generous boss invest company money into employees and clients. I've heard rich people (I'm talking legitimate millionaires here) complain that they are poor, and how they are upset that the government is trying to cap retirement accounts at $3 million (read the article here if you have that much money and are upset about it too). As if three million dollars weren't enough--what are these people doing in retirement--buying yachts?! What else do people do with it?
Oooooh, sweet Jesus, forgive me.
As all these things are being observed, I continue to turn to what Scriptures say about money:
- That money is neither good nor bad, but the love of money is. 1 Timothy 6:10
- That money is not mine or yours, but God's. We merely are stewards of it. Matthew 25:14-30
- That not all giving is equal. Mark 12:41-44
- That the way we steward money shows what we really care about. Matthew 6:19-24
Ultimately, I think money (and spending money) displays our priorities. We will spend (or save) the disposable income that we have on what we really care about. Do we spend it to be able to stuff more junk in our closets, so that our nails can always be painted, so that our children will know the piano, French, and how to properly lay their forks when they are finished eating, or do we spend it by generously giving to the church and other organizations that provide for people's needs?
I find that there are always ways for me to shift my financial priorities. It's also much better for me to give right after I get paid. That way I won't spend the money that I meant to give.
"When I have money, I get rid of it quickly, lest it find a way into my heart." John Wesley