Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Money money money

I get so cheesed off with money. It can do so much good, can change the lives of people so easily (for better or worse) and yet it and attitudes to it can be so destructive.
Sal and I seem to have struggled with money the whole of our married life. God has been so faithful with pay rises, unexpected gifts, provision from unlikely places and the support of family and friends and yet I continue to get so frustrated with money. We seem to be genetically incapable of working off our overdraft and staying in the black, we seem unable to say "no" to things we cannot afford and then get cross and stressed when we see "OD" before we are a week into the month.
My solution, unsurprisingly, tends to be to try to organise my way out of it. If I can budget a bit tighter, move this money around, cut back on this, then we'll get there. Not exactly the life of faith I am called to, not exactly life in all its fullness either.
God never promised me I would be wealthy, he never promised me that I would be free from financial worries, but he has promised me that he will never leave me or forsake me and that he will supply all my needs. Instead of trusting in those promises and looking to God in faith, I try to sort it out myself, despite being unable to and despite the relentless experience of the past few years of my efforts not working.
At my cousin's wedding a couple of years ago, I said to my Dad that I did not believe that our financial problems would be alleviated until I learned to trust God, that God was looking for me to have faith in him rather than trying to simply be more organised. I feel no further along that journey. Indeed, I shared the same sense with a friend at the pub last night. I cannot fix this, I cannot sort it out. Only God can. If I trust in him, he will never fail me.
I need to stop stressing and start trusting. Of course I need to be disciplined with my money and show good stewardship with what God has entrusted to me, of course I need to discern how I should use what I have to honour God and say no to what I cannot afford. But the call is to faith, to trust, to seeking God and finding peace, provision and fulfillment in him. Pray for me.