The mythical “American Dream”: work hard for 40 years and then one day at 65, retire with a golden nest egg that will take care of you the remainder of your days. There are several problems with this fantasy. For one, most of us base our plans on predictions of the future which aren’t accurate. And even if everything works out perfectly, and you arrive at age 65 with $1,000,000 just like your financial planner predicted…
Will you really be comfortable? In reality, when this happens to most people, they’re usually terrified they’ll run out of money. They’ve lost their ability to produce an income and are now totally dependent upon their nest egg. But what if they live too long? What if they spend too much? What if the market doesn’t perform the way they expect it to? So they become miserly and spend only the barest minimum. They worked their whole life to get to this magical day and now they’re miserable. American Dream? Jesus (and many other scriptures) teach us that hoarding is really a bad idea, and we can see from this example that it leads to a miserable life for most people. So why do we do it?
There is a better way. The way financial institutions do it. They concern themselves with cash flow . But they don’t focus on cash flow because it’s biblical, they do it because it’s wise stewardship, and they’re in the business of stewardship. As of late, many financial institutions have broken major principles either because they were forced to by the government, or they became greedy. But the vast majority of financial institutions that you never hear about are doing fine – even in current market conditions – because they are practicing the principles that have worked for generations.
Like banks, we need to focus on now rather than hoarding for “someday.” When we are focused on cash flow, everything that we are stewarding is focused on Now. We are able to react immediately in any way that God calls us. If He calls us to give a large amount of money to some person, charity, or cause…we have the cash flow to put towards this. We are not stuck in the position that most find themselves of feeling like they have to dig into their hoarded wealth, afraid that by giving it away they will not have enough.
If God calls us to give all of our free cash flow away in any year, we are prepared and able to do this. We will have new cash flow from our assets the next year. In most years, we will probably save some portion. When we buy new cash flow producing assets, we will have greater cash flow the following year. If we stay focused on stewarding our resources in this way, we should reach a point very quickly when we have more cash flow than we do expenses. This is a great day! There are some out there who work a job not because God has called them to this, but because they feel trapped into doing this to support their families. With enough passive cash flow, they can be free of this. Many people love their work, but do not have enough cash flow to give to the causes that the Lord lays on their hearts. Or they wonder if they are putting enough away. For these, true freedom in Christ can be achieved economically by utilizing these principles.
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