Ever wonder how the official motto of the United States “In God We Trust” was introduced to be on our currency? In 1863, Abraham Lincoln’s Treasury Secretary acted on a proposal by the Reverend Mark Watkinson of Ridleyville, PA, to put the new motto on U.S. coins. On Jul. 30, 1956, President Dwight Eisenhower approved a joint resolution of Congress to have “In God We Trust” placed on all currency, including paper. Although challenged in the courts many times, the motto has endured, with 90% of Americans approving of it. It seems that Rev. Watkinson knew well the scripture from 1 Timothy 6:17: “Teach those who are rich in this world not to trust in their money, which is unreliable. Their trust should be in God, who richly gives us all we need for our enjoyment.” So, how are we doing with placing our trust in God versus money, especially during the current health crisis?
Here are 5 tips for managing your money during a crisis
Do Not Panic
No matter how well we have done or not done in trusting God with finances, it is never too late to start. As Christians, we know that God is never taken by surprise at anything, and is sovereign over everything, including this virus. Nothing brings the Father more pleasure than a loving and trusting heart toward Him.
Develop a Spending Plan
It is said that we never plan to fail, but simply fail to plan. Or put another way, if we do not tell the money God has placed in our care where to go, we will wonder where it went! Make a point now to schedule an appointment with a CCC financial coach to assist in putting a plan in place. Or check out our Financial Ministry to find useful tools to help. Learn to create margin and eliminate debt in your plan.
If you are married, give each other a “high five” and absolutely commit to rowing your financial boat together. If one of you drops the oar, your boat will go in a circle and never make progress. If you are single, select an accountability partner or a financial coach to hold you accountable. A CCC financial coach is always available for singles or couples.
Keep Your Priorities Straight
1 Corinthians 16:2
The government will never ask you politely to make a donation for the services they offer. They simply extract it from your pay and non-payers are prosecuted! The Lord controls the very next breath you take but is a gentleman and only cares that you give out of love, not compulsion. Yet as Christians, we fall short of putting him first. The average giving from an Evangelical Christian is less than 3%. Next to giving, savings should be a priority, but again, savings rates are very low, which makes us prone to debt and bondage.
Be Generous, Especially in Time of Need
Once we develop a plan with the Lord at the top, we will be compelled by love to bless others. Let’s not rely on the government to shoulder this responsibility that is meant to be ours. Remember that God so loved us, that he gave his only Son.
The Bottom Line
When the tide rolls out, the shore is exposed. The pandemic we are living through has certainly exposed some cracks in our finances.
If you find yourself in a solid financial condition
Now is the time to use the resources God entrusted to you to be salt and show the love of Jesus to others.
If you find yourself shackled by debt
It can be frustrating to not be in a position to help others meet needs financially. Now is the time to get this corrected so next time you’re prepared to share your time, talents, and your treasure. Just imagine where you are now with your finances, and then reimagine where you could be with a plan!
One final thought. In addition to “In God We Trust” on our currency, you will also find the Latin expression “E Pluribus Unum,” which translates “Out of Many, One.” What a perfect picture of Christians joining together to care for each other as one in Christ.
Written by Pete McQuillen, Financial Ministry Director