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Mar 9, 2013

10 Days of Financial Wisdom: DAY 10

Integrity Matters
In his book The Millionaire Mind, Dr. Thomas J. Stanley studied the habits of several hundred individuals with a net worth of at least $10 million. He really wanted to find out what makes the typical millionaire tick and uncover any common characteristics that contributed to their wealth.
As he examined the results of his interviews and surveys, Stanley found a definite connection between personal integrity and financial success. In fact, he ranked integrity as a prime predictor of wealth potential - even higher than an individual's chosen business or industry.
In other words, integrity matters!
The reason so many people struggle with building wealth is that they also struggle with integrity. They lack a basic commitment to honesty. That's a strong statement. In fact, it may be so strong that you think it doesn't apply to you. But if you're breathing and if your heart is beating, you have wrestled with being completely truthful at one time or another - and some of those struggles probably had something to do with money.
Simply put, there are two ways to make money and build wealth. You can rely on dishonesty, or you can stay completely committed to integrity. In Proverbs 13:11, Solomon drew a sharp contrast between the two.
Dishonest money may seem to come more easily, but it never lasts. It dwindles away like sand running through our fingers. But honest money, gained through hard work and investment over time, grows. It provides security - not to mention a clear conscience.
Integrity matters - in your finances and in every other part of your life - because a moral breakdown is not a victimless crime. Dishonesty will deeply wound you and those around you. Unless you hold yourself to an ultra-high standard, you will walk through life with an emotional and spiritual limp.
Fortunately, it's not too late to correct course. If you've skimped on integrity in the past, now's the time to come clean - to yourself, to others and to God. Repair that chink in your armor today.
Remember, integrity matters!
By: Dave Ramsey

Initially when I read this I thought, "well this doesn't apply to me because I've never really been dishonest with money." But when I really examine myself I find that it's really not true. I have been dishonest at times, with my husband, about what I bought and how I paid for it (with a credit card).

Just because I wasn't directly conning somebody doesn't mean I was still being honest about money and how I was handling it. Everything we have is from Him and to use it so deliberately with dishonesty is horrible. And what's even more shocking is that I wasn't being frugal with God's money or taking care of my marriage. My sin in spending against my husband, when he worked so hard for that money, is a direct insult to God because God gave my husband to me- as the perfect companion. We were created for each other. To go out and spend recklessly then to be dishonest when my husband ask 'how much did you spend?' is truly appalling and when I finally was able to say to myself, "You were not truthful and this does apply to you" can I then really repent of my sin toward God for ask for forgiveness from my husband.

Ladies, reckless spending of the money God entrusted to you is dishonest. He has so much stored up for us with all the riches and glory this world cannot offer. Spending to fill a hole that only God can fill is purposeless. Spending because you're bored, that also, is unwise. Holding on to stuff around your house that contributes to all the clutter in our lives because at some point we spent money on it, it not being frugal. Be careful.  Are you tempted to lie (sin) to your husband about how much you spent? Does your spending cause dissension in your marriage? Speaking from a gal who's already been there, if you feel the need to 'exaggerate' about what your spending so it doesn't seem so bad' is dishonest.

Sorry if I'm coming down. A lot of what I say is to preach to myself and my blog is just a way to vent my own learning. Some of this may not apply to you but for those of you whom it does apply-take steps starting tomorrow to implement all we've learned in this study. I truly believe that when we ask we are given. Sometimes not in the way we planned but ultimately God knows where he's leading us and if we have the faith to believe that our financial situations are not permanent (given we make changes today) then He will lead us in the path of righteousness.

Please know that I am not a righteous person. I just desperatly want to know Him more, be changed and renewed, and follow the plan he has for my life in Jesus name.


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