Welcome to our Blessed Chats series! Each month, we will dedicate an entire week of blog posts to a topic that affects many of us. These conversations often come up in our Facebook groups and in our real life friendships. We want to share a variety of perspectives on the topic at hand, so we’ve asked women to share their stories and how the teachings of the Church have guided and comforted them. In this series, we’re talking about finances. We’d love for you to join the conversation!
I didn’t know if it could do it. I’d been making money before, of course, when I worked as a teacher, but now as an entrepreneur, I was my own boss. Before, my employer had figured out all the details around my salary, and I just decided if that was acceptable to me or not. Now, all the decisions were on me. I was responsible for all of it: the amount that I charged, the amount that I made, and what I didn’t make.
It forced me to confront my ideas about money that I wasn’t interested to see.
My Money Mentality
If I got down to it, a part of me felt like money was bad. That it wasn’t so good to make it, to ask for it, and that it wasn’t even good to have it, especially a lot of it. Especially if I was going to be a good Christian.
What it really came down to was a feeling of shame and a misunderstanding of money, as well as my own self. But I was now a coach starting her own business, and if I wanted to use those beautiful gifts to serve others, I needed to learn some new skills.
Becoming an entrepreneur forced me to look at my own ideas of money and begin to sort out some hidden beliefs that were affecting my own relationship with God, myself, and the people I served. Underneath it all, I began to discover some beautiful and powerful transformation along the way.
Learn and grow in our Faith and love for the Lord.
Shifting My Mindset
There were some new ways of thinking that helped me to shift my mindset about finances, and our call to serve God and others in abundance.
Money is neutral.
It’s not a bad thing. When we start thinking that money is bad, we can quickly fall into a “scarcity mindset” that most often mirrors mistaken beliefs of our own lack of worth. Rather, when we consider that money is neutral, we detach from money and it can be a blessing to receive from God as well as to give generously to others.
Money is a resource.
Just like any resource, it can be abused or it can be used for good. When we consider that money is a resource, we become good stewards of our finances. We can have a healthy stewardship of money, its care, and even creating more money in our lives and businesses to support ourselves, our families, those in need.
Money is a way to serve and bless others.
Making money is a means of service. Making money means is one way that shows you are making an impact on the world. And when we work with a spirit of service, it is a way to bring about the Kingdom of God. Money can simply be a byproduct of an exchange of value and service. “For to everyone who has more will be given and he will grow rich” (Matthew 25:29). These words express the blessing of using our gifts to serve and of receiving God’s blessings of abundance.
If we are Christians open to receiving God’s abundance in all areas of our lives, why not also be open to receiving God’s abundance in our finances as well? And when we receive God’s abundance through our work, we have the opportunity to be generous to others as well. In fact the more money someone makes, the more they have the opportunity to give and do good in the world.
What better place for God to bestow lots of money than into the hands of good Christians? We Christians can truly use these resources for creating greater beauty, truth and goodness in the world, as well as alleviating the sufferings of others through generosity and through works of service.
The Provision of God
For me, I have felt the challenge to be open to accepting God’s abundance, even financially. The call to create a profitable business that serves many women to transform their lives and live as God has created them to be has been the place to explore new ways of thinking and new ways of serving. The key is detachment and poverty of spirit.
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven. -Matthew 5:3
Part of my “detachment” has been to let go of the mistaken ideas that only were keeping me hidden and preventing me from serving in more powerful ways, and to open myself to receiving God’s goodness of resources through the beauty of work and the generosity that can come from giving to others.
If we can remain detached and serve with generous hearts, we can truly become beautiful instruments of God’s goodness in all areas of our lives, including our finances.
What are your thoughts about money? How can you become more open to receiving God’s abundance in every area of your life, including your finances? How is God calling you to greater service and generosity?
If you want more on the Church’s rich teachings on these engaging topics, our best-selling study, “Blessed Conversations: Rooted,” dives into the Catechism’s teachings and now offers a video companion series along with it featuring Theological Editor Susanna Spencer and Managing Editor Nell O’Leary. Get it here.