Rarely do I recommend a resource after I have given its initial review. A new resource is released tomorrow I believe is so important, I am going to break my unwritten rule. One of the biggest sources of confusion for many Christians and of conflict in many marriages is the subject of money. Oh, God gives us pretty clear guidelines, but knowing how to put them into practice can be tough if not almost impossible for many.
Whether you constantly struggle with debt and finances or feel you have a good, godly grasp on the subject, you may wonder how to pass on skills for handling money, that will not only prevent your children from the stress of debt, but teach them how to use their money in godly ways. Smart Money Smart Kids is written by Dave Ramsey and his adult daughter Rachel Cruze. The book does one of the best jobs I have seen of not only explaining what money skills you need to teach your children, but exactly how to do it.
Kids are great with questions. They can ask “Why?” at the end of even the most thought-out response. Many parents are afraid of studying the Bible with their children – mainly because of the questions their kids may ask. Don’t worry though. You don’t have to know all of the answers. It is perfectly acceptable to tell a child the two of you need to do a little research on the subject and find the answer to that great question together.
Of course, your next question to me is “Where do I go for the answers?” Unless you are a very strong Christian who has studied the Bible for years, I would avoid Google and Wikipedia at all costs. For every grounded Christian who writes something there are multiple agnostics, atheists and very confused people who write something that is so far from the Biblical truth as to be scary.
Nothing makes me sadder than to listen to Christian parents who are obviously experiencing mission drift in their homes. They are totally unaware this drift will most likely take their children away from the core spiritual beliefs the parents think they are instilling. In fact, the drift can become so severe the children grow up to reject God entirely.
You see, mission drift is when an organization (your family) forgets its purpose in favor of practicality. You make tiny, little, seemingly meaningless decisions on a day to day basis. What we often don’t realize (until it is too late) is that the sum of these decisions has caused us to drift away from our core mission: raising children who will be dedicated Christian servants of God and who will go to Heaven when they die.
My husband and I were blessed to be raised in families where we were taught godly values about money. We were trained to spend less than we earned, keep debt to a minimum, save money for unexpected expenses (and expected large ones) and give a good bit of our money away to Church and charity.
As single people, we continued these careful ways. When we married, it was easy to pay down the little debt we had and become debt free. Once our daughter entered the picture, we quickly introduced her to the concepts of work, saving and giving.
So, when we found Dave Ramsey, it wasn’t because we needed to change anything we were doing, but we wanted some fun, informative materials on financial topics to use while homeschooling our daughter. We stumbled upon him through his radio show and purchased his teen video series. As I have mentioned before, our daughter absolutely loved it. She was probably in middle school at the time and would jump out of bed every morning and race to put his dvd in and watch it.
Normally, these blog entries flow easily. Honestly, I hesitated before even agreeing to do this one. The idea of talking to Christian moms about romance novels and erotica seemed questionable at best. Then I remembered my teen years. A friend at school introduced me to romance novels. Pretty innocent seeming ones, especially compared to 50 Shades of Gray (which I haven’t read).
Over time though, I realized they were creating an image of the perfect man, one which didn’t exist. I was subconsciously comparing the men portrayed in these books to the actual men I encountered. Not surprisingly, the real men weren’t nearly as intuitive and romantic as these fictional men.
Eventually, I stopped reading romance novels and met and married my husband. I thought it was interesting that after I met my husband, I wasn’t even tempted to read a romance novel. I always thought it was strange until I read the book Pulling Back the Shades by Dannah Gresh and Dr. Juli Slattery.