• Athelda Scotia

Money Talks & Sometimes Lies

Remember the old adage, “Money Talks?” Well, it’s true, money does talk. You can actually discern a lot about a person simply by paying attention to how, and on what, they spend their money. We tend to spend our money on the things about which we care deeply. I was raised in an environment where money was very limited, and rarely available for things that were not absolutely necessities. Never the less, I still have observed people foregoing making payments towards those necessities and spending their limited amounts of money on things simply because they brought them pleasure. This is not at all uncommon. We spend our money on what we want.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., once famously said, “Some people pay for what they want, then beg for what they need.”

A person’s biographical narrative can be gleaned simply by paying attention to what, and even where, they spend their money. Having a safe and secure home environment is important to me so I invest more to ensure that end. I hate being broke or not paying my bills on time. Therefore, I manage my money in ways that help me avoid being broke and allows me to always pay all of my bills early. Because of this commitment my money tells banking institutions and credit reporting agencies that I can be trusted with money. Why? Because “money talks.”

If you believe “money talks,” then you can assume that it also misleads and even tell lies. Some people think, “My life would be so much better, if only I had more money.” For many of these people, that is probably a lie. Many of these folks are likely ignoring the root cause of their problems or dissatisfactions. Some people even think, “I don’t need to concern myself with money, because money isn’t everything.” For many of these people, that is probably another lie. Many of these folks despise the actual work and dedication required to manage their finances, properly plan and budget spending, and basically commit to continually improving their financial intelligence.

Money is a “thing.” There’s a saying, “You should love people and use things, not love things and use people.”

Also, “The love of money is the root of all evil; which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.” 1 Timothy 6:10.

“He that loveth silver (money) shall never be satisfied with silver; nor he who loveth abundance (wealth) be satisfied with their increase.” Ecclesiastes 5:10.

These are just a few verses that warns against loving “things,” especially money. Notice Timothy is addressing loving money, not having money, as well as the resulting greed which is applicable to some but not all.

Money is just a tool. Like any tool, in order for it to be effective, one has to know both the purpose and limitations of the tool. I have a lot of different types of tools in my toolbox. I am not, and have never been, inclined to love any of them. I have only wanted to use them, which is the only reason they were acquired in the first place. Further, some of my tools come in vast varieties, shape, and sizes. Others are one of a kind, and all I have ever needed was one. In my entire life, so far, I have only needed one hammer. I have never purchased a tool, just for the sake of having that tool. I only own tools I need and use. The tools one acquires should be based upon the person’s actual and individualized needs and circumstances, at present or for their planned future.

If money is a tool, then it stands to reason that we should do all we can to learn how to use it effectively in our lives so that simply acquiring the tool itself is not the ultimate goal, but rather an instrument for reaching a goal with a much higher and meaningful purpose. Because we have diverse goals, situations, and circumstances, there will be diversity in terms of the amount of this tool we need. Therefore, simply comparing your tools to someone else’s is covetous and unproductive.

When building, constructing, or simply assembling parts, the starting point is not the tool but what needs to be built, constructed, or assembled. The actual project or task has to be known before a determination of what materials are required. On the other hand, having the right materials but improper or insufficient tools bring only frustration.

“For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?” Lest haply after he hath laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him? Luke 14:28

I absolutely love this principle. It teaches me the following:

1. When building anything, I have to sit down and count, FIRST. Sitting means I am not in a hurry but am making time to focus and properly plan. My planning MUST include counting. Counting is basic math. Therefore, the thing I am planning or building must first be converted into a basic math problem.

2. Once I have developed and understood the math problem (considered ALL aspects of cost, including time, money, materials, etcetera), ensure the resources are available to balance towards completion.

3. Fully understand what constitutes “finish it,” or the completion of your project or plan. This must be known in order to ensure resources are sufficient. When the end goal is unknown, it leads to barely getting past the “foundation” stage of building.

4. Once 1 through 3 are satisfied, then and only then, should you START building, because who wants to be mocked.

Don’t get me wrong, while money is just a tool, it is also a very important tool in current societies. Therefore, understanding its true nature and function in our lives is critical. Don’t let money, in and of itself, be your goal. Ensure money is just a small part of your equation for living YOUR best life, not your perception of someone else’s.

Stay safe and take good care of yourselves.


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