Probably one of the biggest misconceptions about finances is that we’ve got it all under control. We can acknowledge that God is in control of every other aspect of our lives, but when it comes to money, suddenly we become the authority. Therein often lies the problem going into marriage.
The reality is, God is in control of everything, including our money. “Everything in heaven and earth is yours, and you are king, supreme ruler over all. All riches and wealth come from you; you rule everything by your strength and power; and you are able to make anyone great and strong.” (1 Chronicles 29:11-12). And too often we do not realize that how we handle money can have eternal impacts. “If, therefore, you are not trustworthy with worldly wealth, who will trust you with true wealth?” (Luke 16:11)
If a couple has differing approaches about spending, saving, giving and debt it can result in arguments and dissention when it comes to finances in married life. A sad reality plaguing our society today is the staggering divorce rate we witness from year to year. The Catholic Church recognizes this tragedy and holds the sanctity of marriage in high esteem. Therefore, couples planning to marry in the Catholic Church are required to attend marriage preparation classes. Due to time constraints, many of these marriage preparation programs touch briefly on finances, but do not dive deeply into issues related to marital finances. But different attitudes about finances can easily break a marriage. Coming to agreement on how to spend, save, give, and manage money can take years, many arguments and much angst. And all too often financial issues lead to divorce.
The God Marriage & Money book from Compass Catholic Ministries helps couples discover and address their differing attitudes about finances. The book has a series of short chapters, each related to a different aspect of money in marriage. Topics cover a range of subjects: God’s part; our role as stewards; debt, spending, seeking counsel, major purchases and eternity are some of the topics. The principles are all based on the Bible and teachings of the Catholic Church.
At the end of each chapter there are a series of topics for the couple to each answer separately then discuss:
- What are my financial strengths and weaknesses?
- How much do we have in debt as a couple?
- What is our goal for saving?
- What is the biggest cultural influence in my spending?
- Do we have a crisis budget?
The book is intended to spark conversations and decisions rather than supplying answers that may or may not work for a particular couple based on their unique situation.
When we bring God into all aspects of our marriage our blessings are multiplied and troubles are easier to handle. God has a plan for each marriage and handling money his way can free couples from the grip of our secular society and allow them to focus on his plan.
~Prov. 3:5-8 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all things acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight.”