DEAR BILLY GRAHAM: We had a great Christmas, until the credit card bills began arriving. That was months ago, but I don’t think we’ll ever get them paid off. I guess this isn’t a very spiritual question, but could you warn people about thoughtless spending? I wish someone had warned us. — D.M.
DEAR D.M.: The Bible actually has a great deal to say about our money and how we should handle it. After all, God is concerned about every area of our lives, and money touches almost everything we do.
If you could go back six or eight months, what would you do differently as far as your money and your spending are concerned? I suspect you’d be much more careful — spending less, making a realistic budget in advance, avoiding debt as much as possible and so forth. You also might be more thoughtful about your gift-giving, such as not trying to impress others or win their friendship by giving lavish gifts. You also would realize how debt can be like a heavy chain wrapped around your neck.
You can’t go back six or eight months, of course, but you can learn from them, and that is what I hope you’ll do. In other words, learn from the past, and don’t make the same mistakes six months from now! Limit your current spending also, and do all you can to get out of debt, and stay out.
The most important thing you can do, however, is to commit your finances — and your whole lives — to Jesus Christ. God loves you, and he wants to teach you to use the money he has given you wisely and for his glory. Let Jesus’ words guide your hearts and minds every day: “No one can serve two masters.… You cannot serve both God and money” (Matthew 6:24).
Write “My Answer,” Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; or visit www.billygraham.org.
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