The word “gate” is used 341 times in the NIV Bible. The gate symbolizes the place where you leave one place and enter another. In the scripture above, the Lord commanded that His people write His Laws on their gates so they would be ever mindful of Him as they were coming and going. The important men of any city met at the city gates to decide all the important matters of the city and its people. Jacob even found himself at a gate to Heaven…
“He was afraid and said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God; this is the gate of heaven.” (Genesis 28:17)
On a smaller and more personal level – if you’re a farmer who plants a garden and keeps some chickens, but you don’t have a gate separating your field from your family’s activities and instead do this within the land close to your house, there’s a good chance that your family would consume all the produce, eggs, and meat. You would be sustained (although subject to the changing weather), but you would not be accumulating wealth.
If, on the other hand, you have a mind towards building real wealth, you’ll probably have a house and a nice yard where your family plays with the same garden to support your family. But around this, you’ll have a fence which would have a Gate leading out to the fields. You might have livestock, crops, orchards, or vineyards out there, or perhaps all four! These things will bring forth your wealth. Even if you are starting small and want to build towards being this successful farmer – the gate is the key (or gateway) to building real wealth. You must have the Gate to establish the discipline of building wealth that does not get consumed.
So what is a Wealth Gate?
Your Wealth Gate is an account that segregates all personal funds from investing funds. Like the story above, most people make the mistake of not separating the two and are constantly dipping into money that in their mind they are saving. We’ve had many people tell us that they save a certain amount of money each month, only to find at the end of the year that it’s not there. There might be an excuse, such as they needed a vacation or a new car.
Whatever the case is, that money wasn’t really saved because you ended up consuming it. So a realistic budget is important so that all such expenses are accounted for before money passes through the Wealth Gate.
Once in there, only three reasons exist why you should pull money out of these accounts:
- You’ve had the direst of emergencies
- You’ve gotten to the point of being able to live off of the fruit of your stewardship which is the cash flow of your assets, or
- The Lord calls you to give from that cash flow (this is the most important goal of the cash flow)
Otherwise, you simply do not remove money from your Wealth Gate. Once money flows into there, it becomes your investment capital. We’ll discuss how much should be going in soon. You have budgeted the amount to invest each year, and you are free to live off of what is in your Checking Accounts as well as dip into your Rainy Day Fund for life’s little emergencies. The amount budgeted for Savings goes into your Wealth Gate.
Once there, it probably won’t stay there long. It’s typically not going to be the best place to store money as we’ll see below. It’s main purpose is to segregate your funds. It then tracks where every dollar that you are investing is going, and tracks each dollar of cash flow that you receive from an investment. Any investment that pays you, should pay directly into this fund. The more complex and successful your investing is, the more necessary this becomes. You might develop corporate entities which have their own accounts to circulate in and out of, but you need a main personal account assuming you are earning personal income.
What sort of account should you use?
Typically the best option is a simple Checking account. This is the easy to write checks off of into accounts. It is easy to draft out of, and it easily accepts inflows whether by check or wire. Since this account will have multiple transactions of this type, this is usually the best to use. Of course, this typically means that you do not earn much (or any) income on this money which is why we suggested that you will not leave large amounts of money here.
(We’ll talk about your Storehouse for these purposes later in this section). A type of account that is becoming a little more common is a checking account which has certain usage requirements, but pays a higher interest rate than most CD’s or MM’s – and these work well for some clients.
Let’s review the benefits:
- Your funds are segregated. Savings and investment funds are not commingled with vacation, emergency or spending money.
- A monthly statement documenting all transactions which leads to a financial case history carried forward from year to year.
- Repositioning of every asset is recorded through both inflows and outflows.
- It serves as a clearinghouse for every transaction. Your wealth will never again be misappropriated or spent unknowingly.
Photo credit: Glenbourne at Home