A Little Lesson
Contributed by a regular writer Marion
“But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: for it is He that giveth thee power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant which He swore unto thy fathers, as it is this day.” (Deuteronomy 8:18)
I have a love/hate relationship with money. I love to have it, love to spend it and hate paying bills with it….lol. I’m trying really hard not to pass down my poor spending habits to my son. However, I’m not sure I am succeeding. So the day I came across a blog post by a mom, about teaching her daughter better spending habits, I was intrigued.
The daughter wrote up a contract, explaining that her parents would give her $100 at one time and she would be responsible for buying everything she needed or wanted for a year. As all parents know, kids are expensive, plus they have no idea just how much money they spend;) So as I read the post to those around me, my son and I decided we would try it.
Unlike the original poster, we decided on a single payment with a weekly allowance. We also came up with an amount he will get paid each day, for helping me with the children I watch this summer. Since he also earns money through the winter refereeing hockey games, it shouldn’t be very hard to make enough to get through the year. The question is…..will he be able to save any?!?!
When I was 13, I couldn’t, because at that time I lived in a city where it was easy to buy stuff anytime one wanted. My son, on the other hand, lives 7 minutes away — driving — from the nearest corner store…lol. So it might be a little easier for him to save than I. Even today, I can save money if I never leave my house….but once I get into the grocery store, I’m always buying extras…haha:)
Still, my hope is that he learns that saving money for something he really wants, is far greater than me buying it for him. That he learns to take care of his stuff, because I will no longer be replacing it. That he learns the difference from a need and a want. Yes, he might want that new ball cap but with 30 ball caps at home, does he really need it?!?!
The only rule I put on him being able to buy what he wants (at least, until he is broke) is that 10% of all his earnings will go into a jar marked JESUS. With that accumulated money, every six months he will find an organization or charity that is Jesus based and donate the entire contents to them. Whether he uses it to buy chickens or goats at Christmas for a family in Africa, or sponsors (in part) a child getting what they truly need…..it makes no difference, as long as the donation is done with the idea of putting Jesus first.
After that, he needs to save 20% for COLLEGE, because in five years or so it’ll be necessary to have money for that!!!!! And maybe, once he sees how much money he can save, how much stuff he doesn’t really need, and how he can help others who are less fortunate, his outlook on money will be awesome when he finally becomes an adult. And who knows, maybe he can even teach me a thing or two 😉