God has made us stewards of His resources.
During the Christmas season, many of us use our resources to provide gifts for loved ones. This is a good thing. It is good to be generous to our loved ones. But as we consider what gifts we should purchase for our family and friends, we can get hit with a few financially unhealthy temptations.
None of us are totally immune to it.
What are some of these temptations of which we all need to be aware? Here are six:
- Trying to make cost reflect feeling. You are buying gifts for those you love. And, sometimes, you find yourself wanting the gifts to reflect how you feel about them. But this is an expensive and impossible want.
- Buying something for everyone. You feel like you should get a gift for every friend and family member that you have talked to over the past ten years. You feel bad leaving anyone out. But this makes your gift list incredibly long and costly. So maybe it is okay to reduce your gift list this year.
- Buying something for you. As you browse through the aisles or websites, you may find yourself desiring to purchase a few items for yourself. Pay attention to your budget. If the items go beyond your budgeted amount, don’t swipe the card or push the purchase button.
- Buying something simply because it is a great deal. There are a lot of really good deals during this time of the year. But they are only good deals if you really need the item. Don’t buy something, for you or someone else, just because it’s on sale. This is always a bad deal.
- Opening up another credit card to get a purchase discount. It seems like almost every place has its own credit card now. An these cards tend to have a very high interest rate. If that Christmas purchase doesn’t get paid off soon, any savings is lost. So it’s probably best to hold off on getting that new store card.
- Purchasing more that you can afford. Many do this every year. It’s easy to get caught up in the moment this time of year. Try sticking to your budget so that your Christmas joy doesn’t turn into Christmas regret.
Enjoy this Christmas season. Even enjoy the purchasing of gifts for family and friends.
Just don’t make Christmas a time when sound financial decision-making goes out the window.
Avoid these temptations, and have a very merry and financially healthy Christmas.
Written by Art Rainer, member of the Summit Stewardship and Generosity Ministry Leadership Team.
The Summit offers a variety of stewardship classes to help equip you to become a faithful steward.
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