“It is not the creation of wealth that is wrong, but the love of money for its own sake.”
~ Margaret Thatcher
“There are two ways to get enough : One is to continue to accumulate more and more.
The other is to desire less.”
~ G.K. Chesterton
DUE TO INSUFFICIENT KNOWLEDGE, on seemingly complex or fragmentary financial concepts, many people are in a quandary or confused in the so-called financial journey to stability.
In spiritual realm, even some religious devotees have a false concept on financial matters. They believed that living in a temporary world, one ought not be wealthy for man’s permanent destiny is eternity anyway; more so, contradictory to being Godly?
Generally speaking, many would rather – consciously or unconsciously – want to remain poor; comfortably thinking – without valid reason – that to be poor is part of God’s plan.
Conversely, the deeply spiritual and brilliant Pope John Paul II openly declared, “Do not think that God wants you to be poor. God does not want you to be poor.” George Bernard Shaw supplemented, “Beware of false knowledge. It is more dangerous than ignorance.”
In secular realm, on the contrary, most people are quite immersed in accumulating wealth. However, unaware of – or ignoring? – purposeful or ennobled living, some are eventually trapped in the sphere of mere physical existence.
The foregoing financial perplexities can be resolved through a harmonious holistic approach. As Augustine of Hippo, theologian and philosopher, aptly said, “Pray as if everything depends on God. But work as if everything depends on you.”
You Can Be Rich And Holy
Anthony de Mello, S.J., author of the book entitled: One Minute Wisdom, told a short but – seemingly paradoxical – exemplary story:
It intrigued the disciples that the Master who lived so simply would not condemn his wealthy followers.
“It is rare but not impossible for someone to be rich and holy”, the Master said one day.
“When money has the effect on his heart that the shadow of that bamboo has on the courtyard.”
The disciples turned to watch the bamboo’s shadow sweeps the courtyard without stirring a single particle dust.
Have A Solid Spiritual Foundation
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
~ Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)
Please be reminded that to live in prosperity is an innate right – instituted by God – you should be aware of; for your sublime destiny is at stake.
In retrospect, at-a-glance, when Adam and Eve were created, they cannot be found wanting. Conversely, God bestowed upon them the so-called “divine provision.”
The Scripture provides, Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food”. ~ Genesis 1: 29 (NIV)
And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”~ Genesis 2:16 – 17 (NIV)
Moreover, man was – especially – created to partake in the glory and honor of his Creator. As the Psalmist aptly proclaimed, “What is man, that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor.” ~Psalms 8:4-5 (NIV)
Unfortunately, however, because of disobedience – by eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil – the umbilical cord of the aforesaid divine provision was cut off.
Henceforth, mankind need to do everything – by themselves, sometimes in painful toil – in order to live; as a substitute for the rescinded divine provision and freedom, once bestowed upon them by God.
But because of God’s “unconditional” love, He deliberately created plan B – to restore lives; as replacement for the destroyed plan A; so that mankind could again live life to the fullest.
The Scripture provides, “I came so that they could have life—indeed, so that they could live life to the fullest ~ John 10:10 (CEB)
Mankind, therefore, must – above all – recognize God in the restorative process, as one of the pillars to build a solid spiritual foundation; towards the realization of a prosperous living.
The Scripture clearly reminds, “But remember the LORD your GOD, for it is He who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms His covenant, which He swore to your forefathers, as it is today.” ~ Deuteronomy 8:18 (NIV)
Explore Financial Literacy Cautiously
“We are not taught financial literacy in school. It takes a lot of work and time to change your thinking and to become financially literate.”
~ Robert Kiyosaki
To learn the fundamentals of financial literacy is just the beginning in exploring the intricacies of a financial system.
Most proficients on finance disclosed that only “vital few” – of the world’s population – are “financially literates.” Conversely, sad to say, “trivial many” are “financially illiterates.”
Surprisingly, financially illiterates include even those with formal educational attainment, excellent in the academe, career executives, intellectuals, spiritual persons, and the like.
It seems imperative, therefore, that financial literacy should be explored cautiously; to equip a person in the aforesaid process towards financial stability.
5 Basic Sources Of Income
- Employment – income source from government or private companies; including employed lawyers, doctors, accountants, engineers, etc.
- Self-Employment – income source from small businesses, who are their own boss; specialists and private practitioners who offer their time, skills, talents and services; including also self-employed lawyers, doctors, accountants, engineers, etc.
- Business – income source from big businesses. Employers own a system and people work for them; to plan, manage, direct and control the whole operation, and the like.
- Investment – income source from (1) Paper assets, such as: stock market, mutual funds, treasury and corporate bonds, etc.; (2) Real properties, such as: lands, commercial buildings, condominiums or apartments for rent, etc.
- Royalty – income source from creation and sale of intellectual properties, such as: books, musical compositions, patents, internet contents, etc.
Further, a person has to study and apply the various conceptual financial components, such as: frugality or living below your means, delaying of gratifications, necessary and unnecessary expenses, paying your debts faster, etc; and moral or ethical values, such as : discipline, honesty, gratitude, extra- mile mentality, and the like.
Henry David Thoreau, briefly but deeply said, “Wealth is the ability to fully experience life.”
2 Kinds Of Income
“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.”
~ Benjamin Franklin
- Active Income (man works for money, working hard, manual money machine).
“Employment” and “Self-employment,” belong to this category. One of its advantages is that, you do not need any capital to start with; only your education, skill, talent, experience, time, etc. – to render your services. In return, you will earn money; the reason why most people rely on Active Income from the start of their working lives.
The obvious disadvantage, however, is that : the moment you stop working, you stop earning money too. Hence, you may create additional source/s of active income to attain your financial goal, sooner than later.
2. Passive Income (money works for man, working smart, automatic money machine).
“Big Business,” “Investment,” and “Royalty” belong to this category. It requires initial money to invest with; and, likewise, education, skill, talent, experience, time, etc.
But once you have the profound financial knowledge and experience, you will earn continuing income/s with lesser efforts; yet your “net worth” continues to grow.
In fact, most financial experts consider Passive Income as the holy grail or key towards financial freedom.
As you explore, therefore, and become familiar with the details of financial literacy, the same will be embedded into your mind; and become an integral part of a mental framework.
If so, there will be a gradual manifestation of a financial paradigm shift from : Active Income (working hard) to Passive Income (working smart). Otherwise, a combination of both.
In conclusion, holistic financial concept is a mind-over-matter issue. More so, continuing study and strict application of its various valuable details may ultimately lead an individual towards freedom.
As the renowned Albert Einstein profoundly remarked, “All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree. All these aspirations are directed toward ennobling man’s life, lifting it from sphere of mere physical existence and leading the individual towards freedom.”
The Scripture briefly but precisely affirmed, “For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters.” ~ Galatians 5:13 (NLT)