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Thriftiness - it is more than money - Live life with your kids - Issue 079
November 14, 2008
Hi there! ....

This week:

As the year hurtles to its end, we have had yet another busy week. I think the highlight was the Memorial Service we attended on Tuesday, Remembrance Day (In Australia this is remembered on the 11th day of the 11th month at 11.00am). Before we left for town we read a few books that highlighted both the horrors of war and the duty of remembering the men who died, and their vision for freedom. I was particularly taken with a line from the poem “In Flander’s Fields” that said, “take up our quarrel …. The torch, be yours to hold it high….” If we forget the fight for freedom, we have forgotten the men who died. This is what I focused our discussions on, especially with the older two. Live life with your kids!

Character Notes
Thriftiness - its more than Money!

Allowing myself to spend only what is necessary
- Achieving True Success

Thriftiness is a hot topic at the moment – everyone wants to, needs to save their pennies. But thriftiness is more than just spending our money wisely – thriftiness is a way of life that considers everything that God has given us, and our decision to use each one of those things wisely.

  • God has given us the world to care for
  • God has given us money, possessions and time
  • God has given us talents and abilities
  • God has given us our children
  • God has given us His Word

Are we being responsible stewards with each one of these things? To be a steward means that we manage, keep in order, and oversee. Will God commend us with a, “Well done, good and faithful!”

According to Character First, to be good stewards (regardless of which area of life we are considering) we need to

  • Save more, Spend less
  • Use what I have
  • Look for best value
  • Consider my budget
  • Understand needs vs. wants
We are likely to be very familiar with these terms in light of our money resources. We are always looking for ways to reduce how much money we spend, we are challenged with the ideas of recycling and not keeping up with the Jones’, we bargain hunt, we know the importance of living within our means and we try and discern between our needs and wants with varying success!

But thriftiness, being a good steward of the things God has given to us, is about more than money. We can connect these same principles to other areas of our life.

Save more, spend less: We tend to fill our life with so much stuff – material and activity wise. It is do do do, go go go, buy buy buy. When we spend less, be it time, money or energy, we are left with something in reserves. We don’t know God’s plans for us, He reveals them to us little by little. One aspect of being ready for Him, is to have some reserves.

Use what I have: We never live one character trait in isolation; they all work together in our life. When we consider thriftiness we need to make the connection with contentment. Am I happy, at peace, in rest, with God’s provision? Do I trust Him with my needs? But once again it isn’t just about our possessions and physical needs; can I trust him to provide energy for my day, time for my to-do list, and wisdom for my problems?

Look for best value: This means we need to research. We need to make wise and informed decisions when managing the things God has given us. We are not to make reactive decisions, or decisions based on the wisdom of the world, but rather we are to look to the creator of all things and His Word as the basis of all our actions, in all of our decisions.

Consider my budget: Having a financial budget is all about having a financial goal and managing your day to day resources in order to reach that goal. We need to have a goal and plan on how we are to manage our time, how we are to maintain and care for our possessions, how we are to train our children, and how we are to spread God’s Word. Having a budget isn’t the magic key – referring to it, checking to see if you are on track and making adjustments is what makes living with a budget/plan a success.

Needs vs. Wants: When we become self- focused it becomes hard to discern the difference between needs and wants. When our time is all about me and my goals, when our energy is all about what I can get done, when our house is all about my reputation and my peace we lose the focus that everything has been given to us by God, for God’s purposes. And isn’t this the struggle of all times! I need to do what God says, I want to do what I want!

Thriftiness is managing
my resources in order to
have more to give back to God.

I like this definition of thriftiness because it includes a reason, a purpose for what we do: to give back to God. My desire is to:

  • Manage my money so that I have more to give to God and his purposes
  • Manage my energy, and train my talents, so I have the strength to do the things God wants me to do
  • Manage my children so that I can give them to the Lord for his service
  • Manage my household, so my house is ready and open for whoever comes

Thriftiness isn’t for my comfort, but rather to allow the resources to be there so I can be productive and fruitful in God’s purposes and plans.

Well done my good and faithful servant.
Since you were faithful in small matters,
I will give you great responsibilities.
Come, share your master’s joy!
Matthew 25:23

Website Updates

There are no additions to Lifestyle Homeschool website this week though considering the topic of this week's newsletter you may like to read more about Responsibilities in light of training our children in time, money and energy/work.

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Until next week

Belinda Letchford
Living life with her kids in Australia!

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About Live Life with your kids Newsletter I know homeschool mums are busy with lots to read, so I have divided my newsletter into four sections and you will receive one section a week; short but regular newsletters!
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  • Family Life is a Resource for Education – Spotlights on a particular aspect of family life so we can see the natural opportunities available to us in educating our children.
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