Moolah and Materials

Money, money, money. Let’s get real, most of us are either great with handling money or we aren’t and I have met very few people in the middle ground of being somewhat good and somewhat bad with money. Me? Yeah I am in that middle ground. I go on streaks where I am great, I pay my bills with almost no extra spending. I don’t make much anyways so I don’t have a lot of money. Then I have times where my money is gone before I even get it because sometimes I buy very useless items that in the long run bring me no value or special meaning whatsoever. But I HAVE TO HAVE IT!

DONT spend money.

SPEND money.

I NEED that

I WANT that.

SALES! Well, now I HAVE to get it.

If you ask me what I think of money, it is just green paper. I mean I have green paper at the office I work at and it isn’t that special. At the same time I know how important money is – to pay bills, eat, and keep a roof on your head – it almost becomes a necessity, right?

Nonetheless, as a 20 year old I try to find the sweet spot – not spending too much but still allowing myself to buy a new book, or a movie, or a soft blanket. Just something small that I can enjoy. Sounds easy, but for some reason if I aim to buy 1 book I buy 14 (I speak out of my experience last weekend) and if I am to buy 1 shirt it turns into 4 (also out of my experience last weekend). And then I go two or three weeks without spending anything. I see the receipt and because of sales I saved $84.00 dollars and *BOOM* my spending is justified.

My theory is when I die, I won’t die rich or poor because of the amount in my bank account or the materials I possess in my house. I will die rich or poor based on the things I did, the love I shared, and the people I helped and influenced. I am rich in God’s love and to me that is the best form of payment. This theory is partially why, at times I can be irresponsible with money because it is just money. At the same time I have had this thought for the longest time and still keep buying stuff.  So this year, I am going to spend less and do more.

I tried getting the spending out of my system. On the last day of December I bought 14 books (happily so a gift card paid for half of those) and I bought some new workout clothes (all paid for by a gift card except $2.00). Point being though I am going to spend my money to go on mission trips and travel and to touch other peoples lives. I have, somewhere along the line, become lazy and too materialistic and it happens to a lot of us. It’s fine to read a book and watch a movie or TV show but it should not be what a person does all night and every night all year, which is what I started doing aside from grocery shopping on Friday night.

This is a hard habit to break but as I take on the challenge of doing things that scare me, part of that challenge includes to stop doing nothing and start doing something, anything. So as I enter the year, I hope to spend less on materials, except my Friday night dinner with my brother and my Sunday lunch with friends after church. These are wonderful memories I make. But I will spend less on movies and books, I will stop saying “I HAVE to have that” because in reality I don’t. Instead I hope to say, “That would be great to have, but I have lived and can live without it” and that money will be best put to other things.

I try this knowing that I will struggle greatly with it. I try this knowing I will fail a few times but I will try again, and again, and again.

 

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