Our table group is going through a study called 'Weird" by Craig Groeschel. Throughout the study he has been challenging us to the "God kind of weird" that the Bible calls us to which looks drastically different than the rest of the world. Last night we talked about our finances and that living as God wants us to live means having margin. In Proverbs 21:20 it says, "In the house of the wise are stores of choice food and oil, but a foolish man devours all he has." The way of the world is foolishness based on this description. Most people take their paycheck and spend every penny of it or 'devour it' leaving nothing left over. Many have lost the discipline of storing up or saving.
Having taken Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace several times, one of my biggest take-aways is the idea of having an emergency fund. He challenges people to put $1000 in savings immediately and not touch it for anything but a true emergency. Ultimately he challenges people to put 3-6 months expenses in a money market account to create much needed margin and protection of your finances. Margin is a sign of health. Healthy people have margin in their finances, time and energy. Margin is only achieved by saving, saying 'no', and getting rest. I like to think of margin as 'leaving room for God'. If I have margin in my schedule I have time to stop and pray with someone, help someone change a tire or have a meaningful conversation with a neighbor. If I have margin in my finances it means I can buy a meal for someone who is homeless, or sponsor a child from Zambia, etc. If I have margin in my energy I can play with my kids, stay up and talk with my spouse, etc.
So, let's dare to be 'weird in a God way' and begin to do something radical: put back some margin in our life. Who knows what God has planned for us if we will leave Him some room to work!