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Are You Bad With Money?

I regularly hear people tell me, “I’m bad with money,” or, “She’s good with money.” What does it even mean to be “bad” or “good” with money? Usually, a person who says, “I’m bad with money” is indicating that he over spends, under budgets, doesn’t plan for the future, etc. If someone is “good with money,” that person usually lives within her means, saves, spends, gives, and has money left over. 

Apply this same line of thinking to Jesus’s encounter with the rich young ruler in Mt. 19:16. Was this man “good” or “bad” with money? He was rich, so he’d meet the criteria for being good with money, as outlined above. Or, consider the poor widow in Mk. 12:41, who gave the last of her money to the Lord. She’s flat broke–bad with money?

The usual suspect for being “good with money” received a real challenge from Jesus, and the one “bad with money” was commended.

Perhaps being good or bad with money is a deeper issue than how much of it we have and how we handle it, but rather begins with how we relate to it internally, which plays out in how we give, save, and spend. 

I’d encourage you to move beyond “good or bad” thinking related to money, and consider why it is that you think, feel, and act the way you do financially. Perhaps being good or bad with money serves as a convenient excuse not to grow. Ask the Lord to show you areas in your heart that are impacting the ways you handle what’s in your wallet. 

Tommy Brown

Tommy Brown is a writer, speaker, and develops strategies that support financial development. He and his wife Elizabeth live in Winston-Salem, NC along with their children Seri and Seth. He served in leadership at two churches as an ordained minister from 2001-2014, leading congregations into financial wellbeing and a holistic approach to integrating faith and finances. Tommy has a B.A. in Pastoral Ministry and Masters degrees in Divinity and Management. His entrepreneurial endeavors over the years have extended into real estate development and church consulting on stewardship matters. Now, Thomas works alongside an award-winning team of storytellers at Wake Forest University, performing strategic planning and project development for initiatives that fund the university¹s $1,000,000,000 capital campaign. Thomas was instrumental in forming Wake Forest University's financial wellbeing initiative. He has a heart for seeing churches, students, and people of faith form connections between faith and finances.

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