For about 5 years between the ages of 12 and 17 I carried in my jacket pocket a ‘debt list’ – this thing was ALWAYS on me, wherever I went. What is a ‘debt list’ you ask? Weellll just a list of names and beside this the amount of money the owe me.
My debt list consisted of names and amounts , no matter how small (we’re talking pennies even), of funds owed to me. I never thought it was strange at the time. It just seemed logical and necessary. Weird, right? I mean it’s not like I had some kind of betting ring or was running a savings & loan company. I was working with my allowance and babysitting money, ensuring that my more carefree (primarily) siblings paid back change borrowed. At least I didn’t charge interest…but I think that was more because I wasn’t aware of the wonderful world of interest….(thank goodness! 🙂
Writing that down just now makes it super clear what a bizarre teenager I was. (probably that was already clear to you guys long back…but hey, we’ve already established I’m slow off the mark at times…;)
(….ah…and we wonder why ‘the Sanj’ is single….instead of dating boyz, I was rolling coins….;)
I have been reflecting on all this because of some investment opportunities that have come up. I have always liked finances a lot (you wouldn’t have guessed, right?:) Becoming a Christian really changed my perspective on money. I remember when those who taught me the Bible taught that I needed to give a tithe (an offering) of money to God of whatever I made on a go-forward basis….I misunderstood and made an offering based on everything I had saved to that point – and was glad to do it….I truly felt Jesus freed me from being a slave to money…before it was an obsession, now it had become just a tool.
However, I wonder about this passion for counting, investing, dealing with money that I do think lives in me. It is something that I have ignored for awhile……but I wonder if I am mature enough to let that part of me out and see exactly what kind of beast it is? Money is such a tricky thing. You can say that you are passionate about painting and no one blinks an eye…but finances? As a Christian, you have to negotiate that path with such care. Especially for me, it can become such an all-consuming passion (remember the debt list? yeah, exactly!)….I take it very seriously when Jesus says you can only serve one master, either money or God…(of all the things to choose in the world!! Obviously, Jesus knew above anything else, money was the number one competitor against God….the one which could take you farthest from God…)
I think the key is to take my passion into positive avenues (e.g. assisting other people, especially women, with their finances) It drives me bonkers how little people understand about basic finances/money because often they end up in financial quagmires that could so easily be avoided.
….wish people would listen to me! 🙂 (but then again, maybe not…;)