I want a garage full of power tools. I know that given the right tools, I could build anything. I could also use a new computer. The laptop I use is years old and on it’s last leg. I would like a new car. My current one was totaled in a hail storm and has dents all over it. I would like a camper so I can take my family camping. I would like to replace my regular camera with a new digital camera.
There are a lot of things that I would like to have. There are times when I am out shopping that I could just buy something for myself. I don’t. I deny myself these wants in order that I can buy the things that I need. I can plan – take care of my tithe, my savings, my needs and then save for the things I want – or, I can give in to the greed and just buy it right away.
It’s important that I share this whole decision making process with my children. As a parent, I have a responsibility to teach my children how to handle money responsibly, God’s way. We teach best by leading by example. It’s important that they see that I too want things. That I have priorities. That I plan. That I deny myself the instant gratification. I want to involve them in the process so that they can understand that we don’t always get what we want. That there is a difference between need and want. That will help them deal with the no’s they will get from me when they ask for things. They will eventually understand that their needs are really wants and that if they really want something, they have to plan, save and be patient.
It is up to us, as parents, to leave our children a legacy of stewardship. If we teach our children at an early age to be good stewards of God’s money, they will have a head start in achieving financial freedom.