Plan to Save for Your Future
- Whitney Hopler Crosswalk.com Contributing Writer
- 2002 1 Nov
Here are some ways you can develop a savings plan:
- Know that God expects you to save, not spend and give all your money away. If you save for specific needs and goals, youre exercising wisdom in preparing for the future. Its only when you hoard your money saving far more than you need and neglecting to spend or give as much as you should that you place your trust in money rather than in God.
- Commit to save a portion of your income on a regular basis, and ask the Holy Spirit to give you the self-control you need to stick to your commitment and curtail any unhealthy spending habits you might have.
- Make a list of goods and services for which you need to save, and estimate how much each will cost. Consider both short-term and long-term things you cant afford to buy right now without going into debt (for example, a weekend trip to a favorite beach or a car to replace your current vehicle). Then rank the items on your list according to how high a priority it is for you to obtain them.
- Including your savings in your regular monthly budget, and notice the percentage of your income you could save once youve taken care of other budget items (such as housing, food, utilities, transportation, insurance, giving, taxes, recreation, etc.).
- Set up at least two savings accounts one for short-term savings goals and one for long-term goals. Research the best deals you can find, and open accounts at banks that offer the best interest rates and other favorable details. Remember that your accounts dont necessarily have to be at the same bank.
- Study the list of goods and services for which you need to save, and estimate about how long it will take you to save enough money to buy each one. If it will take longer than youd like to save for a particular item, rearrange your priorities, eliminate an expenditure from your budget or consider taking on extra work to earn extra income.
- Dont dip into your savings accounts prematurely, or to buy anything thats not on your list as a savings goal. If you deplete your savings, emergency bills (such as for car repairs or medical care) will force you to go into debt.
- Know that even small amounts of money will grow significantly if you consistently save. Even when you dont have much, what you do save counts for something and will help you in the future.
- When youre tempted to buy something on impulse, make yourself wait a day or two before taking action. After your waiting period, if you still want to make the purchase, add it into your plan as a savings goal and begin saving your money until you have enough to pay cash for it.
Adapted from The Worlds Easiest Pocket Guide to Starting Your First Savings Plan, copyright 2001. Published by Moody Press, Chicago, Ill., www.moody.edu, 1-800-678-6928.
Larry Burkett, chairman of the board for Crown Financial Ministries, hosts two daily radio programs. He has written more than 40 books.