Right now, are you worried about money?
Whether it’s your church’s money or your personal money–the thought of cash coming in and cash going out can be stressful, especially if more is going out than is coming in.
Here’s my secret to moving beyond worry, and it’s the perfect week to practice:
Changing my attitude to one of gratitude.
Giving thanks is a radically effective way to focus on your strengths, what’s working, and what already is giving you an advantage. Plus, you can be grateful for big achievements and smaller blessings. For example: We have a church building that safely houses our growing community! The lights turn on with the flick of a switch!
I read recently that successful businesses focus 70-80% on their assets on only 20-30% on their liabilities. Focusing on the liabilities is a sure way to failure, so why do so many of us do it in our personal lives?
It’s not that we don’t need to be candid about the challenges. It’s important to face them.
However, we don’t get energy to solve problems by spiralling downward in fear and worry. In fact, just the opposite happens. We lose energy, become paralyzed and don’t take action at all. That’s a formula for disaster.
Here’s what to do instead: Observe Thanksgiving not just this week, but every week.
Here are some ways to do it:
- Give thanks every time you receive a check or electronic payment.
- Light a candle when you pay your bills.
- Go around the table when you have a meal and share one thing that delights you.
- Make a list once a day of five things you are grateful for.
When you experience worry, acknowledge it. Then think of at least one thing you can celebrate.
Now, I’m not saying you will never have thoughts of worry again. I am saying that with time, you can develop the habit of moving quickly from worry to gratitude. If you can do that, your relationship with money will be completely different.
In my constant quest to practice what I preach, I want to share how deeply grateful I am.
I’m thankful for the lives we’ve touched, for the relationships that have developed, for the new adventures that continue, for the possibilities that still exist. I’m grateful that God is present with us no matter what the future may hold.
I’m also grateful for:
- You! Thank you for reading. I love hearing from you, when you have a thought or comment, and especially when you have a different perspective.
- The church leaders around the world who are seeking to faithfully serve God and touch the lives of others with the message of faith and love.
- My country, the United States, for freedom of expression and freedom of worship.
- The public library and the Internet, together the greatest sources of free reading material anyone could imagine, and a boon to a compulsive reader like me. If I had to buy everything I read every year, I’d be broke.
- My family, immediate and extended. We’ll gather Thursday with just a few of us here in Portland, but my father at 93 will be with us, and I’m so thankful for his continued life with us.
- And as always, I’m aware of and grateful for the money that flows into and out of my life and yours, and into and out of our churches, making ministry possible.
So…what are you grateful for? (Let me know in the comments!)
Help your people connect their finances with their faith with The Finances and Faith System:
The Finances and Faith System can help you engage your congregation, your leaders and your people in a systematic, daily reflection on money and faith. In just 29 days, it will help your people link their money and their faith. You’ll create a solid core of folks who deeply understand that God is part of their daily walk, including how they relate to their money.
Get all the details here.