Financial Wellness

Simple Financial Wellness: Four Words!

Reading time: two minutes. I'm enjoying this "four words" series.  I hope you've found it helpful.  Every aspect of the Lutheran Wellness Wheel is incredibly complex.  Finding the healing touch of Christ in every area of our lives is a wonder of God's kingdom, and to Him belongs all the glory. But it's also important to keep this as simple as possible.  I hope these four word handles on wellness have been encouraging to you as we all seek the Lord's healing grace to help us live as stewards of self. Week eight of the series brings us to financial wellness.  Here are my four words of encouragement: "Let's have a talk." Read More

Risen and Brand New... Financial Wellbeing!

Reading time: two minutes. The last of the Post-Easter reflections on the Lutheran Wellness Wheel.  I've enjoyed this so much because Easter changes the way we think and the way we look at everything in our lives, including money.  For a guy who didn't have any, Jesus sure talked a lot about money and possessions.  They say it's the number one subject of the parables, but we all know that the primary subject of the parables is human hearts.  I guess that's why Jesus talked about it so much.  He knows where our hearts are. Read More

When Jesus Appears... In Generosity!

Reading time: two minutes The Parable of the Sheep and the Goats in Matthew 25 can get tricky.  Are our good works ("... you fed me, visited me" etc.) the cause of our salvation?  Certainly not.  We often say, "Works are just evidence of saving faith."  Well, yes, but does that do justice to the text?   "Come..., for I was hungry and you fed me" If, as Jeff Gibbs suggests, the parable is connected to the sending of the disciples in Matthew 10, (no extra clothes, no extra money, no extra shoes, facing sickness and persecution) then those who provide support for the bearers of the good news are offering care to the Lord Jesus. I can't speak for my fellow pastors or for educators, but it's pretty humbling to think that those who in faith give generously to pay my salary are credited with saving faith in the gospel I share. When people support me by their gifts, "You did it unto me," Jesus said. Read More

A Prayer for Financial Wellbeing

Praying time: less than three minutes. This will be the last in our series of prayers around the Lutheran Wellness Wheel.  God is so good.  Join me in thanks for His every blessing! The earth is Yours, O Lord.  I rejoice that You have awakened me to a new day and a new opportunity to walk through Your creation, knowing that I am a child of the Owner of all wealth, and an heir of treasure that will never perish, spoil or fade. "Providence" is such a beautiful word.  You, the Owner are also my Provider, and how generous You have been toward me and my family.  Just as wise parents know best the needs of their children, You also know best just what I need.  My wants often obscure richness of Your provision, so give me faith today to confess that my Father in heaven does indeed daily and richly bless me with all I need to support this body and life. Read More

Financial Wellbeing and 1 Chronicles 29

Reading time: less than 3 minutes. This is our last stop on our current tour: What's a Scripture that epitomizes the eight aspects of wellness depicted in the Lutheran Wellness Wheel? Peter and David are such beloved characters because they display in their lives both the best of a walk of faith and the worst.  We love them because they are like us.  Flawed. Toward the end of his life, David had one of those episodes where he showed us again what it means to be a man after God's own heart.   Read More

Healthy Churches Pay a Healthy Salary!

Reading time: three minutes It's funny to me that churches often have such a hard time talking about money in general and salaries in particular.  Jesus spoke a great deal about money, treasure and possessions.  Why can't we? Our Lord taught that our possessions should not own us, but that we should manage them to God's glory.  I think it glorifies God when professional church workers are paid a decent, honorable salary for the service they perform.  I think it's a topic worth talking about in every congregation. If I could, I'd ask the lay leaders at every church I visit four important questions.  Wait a minute.  I DO ask every church I visit four questions!  Here they are... Read More

Financial Generosity Is the Power of WE!

Reading time: less than three minutes. Eustolio Gomez, CPS Here's a perfect example of "The Power of WE."  In our sixteen years of ministry, we've sponsored nearly 280 Grace Place Wellness Retreats for almost 8,000 church workers and spouses of The LCMS. Eustolio Gomez of Concordia Plans Services has attended about 270 of those retreats and led a Financial Planning Workshop for church work couples that consistently is mentioned as one of the most impactful parts of the week.  Thanks for your partnership, Eustolio!  You're an important part of our WE at Grace Place Wellness. I've only been at about twenty of those workshops.  I gain something new every time.  But here's the most amazing part of the feedback we get. Couples tell us, "This morning was the best, most productive conversation we've had about our family financial situation in twenty or thirty years." Read More

Financial Wellbeing Is... Generosity!

Reading time: 3 minutes Did you watch the Oscars?  Did you see the glamour and glitz of the Red Carpet and the Hollywood icons? I didn't watch much either.  A little bit goes a long way.  Now, you've got to keep up with Hollywood to keep your finger on the pulse of where society is going (that's another topic for another day!), but I have a hard time watching the excesses of wealth.  "Who are you wearing?"  For real? In the kingdom of God, success and personal worth is never measured by material wealth. Read More

Net worth can't buy fiscal happiness

If you have a family, you likely have financial worries — especially this time of year as the kids get ready to head back to school, whether they’re starting kindergarten or college.  But your total net worth can’t buy your fiscal well-being, according to a Gallup study. Instead, research shows that our financial wellness is more closely tied to our perception that we have enough money to adequately care for ourselves and our family without the burden and stress of debt. Read More