Save money, live well
Posted: Wednesday, November 4, 2009 8:01 pm
There are a lot of skills I don’t possess. A LOT of skills. Recently, I had to rent a car in Charlotte, N.C. When I needed to fill the gas tank I pulled into the station, got out of the car, and realized that my gas tank and the station’s pump were on opposite sides of the car. My solution? I pulled the car forward and around to the OTHER side of the same pump. Still my tank and the pump were on opposite sides. I know. You can’t believe it. Well, prepare yourself. I then got into that tiny rental car and pulled around the pump AGAIN to the original side. You guessed it. Still on opposite sides. I thought the gas station owner was going to run out of the station and make a citizen’s DUI arrest on the spot. I eventually figured out the problem. But it took me a while. To say that I have “spatial issues” is an understatement.
When it comes to money, some of you are like Lisa Smartt at a gas station with a rental car. You WANT to take care of money the right way. You know there IS a right way. But you’re frustrated by your lack of success in getting there. Don’t be discouraged, friend. I’m the one who drove the rental car around and around the gas pump, remember?
I wish there had been someone at the pump that day in Charlotte just directing me to turn the car around. I could have done it right on the first try if only someone from the outside had told me where to go. When it comes to money, I’m more than willing to be your cheerleader. I know. You’ve already come around the pump a few times and you’re ready to throw in the towel and have a good cry. Hang in there. If you have a job, be thankful. After you receive your paycheck, the first checks you write should be checks of giving. Give generously. There’s something mysterious about giving. Those who can give money away indicate that they’re not owned by the money. If you think extravagant shopping is fun, try extravagant giving. It’s much more enjoyable. You also need to save and invest money for a rainy day. Look around. It rains. Be prepared.
You have to pay for a place to live. If you make a lot of money, you can live in a big place. If you make very little money, you need to live in a very little place. Americans seem to be having a tough time with this one. If you make a lot of money and you’re REALLY smart, you can live in a small or medium-sized place and have more money for giving and saving. OK. You have to eat. God set up this system a long time ago. However, you do not have to eat somewhere where someone refills your glass every time you rattle it. We like to eat at home. It saves money. We also like beans and cornbread. Soak a 1 pound bag of pinto beans (89 cents) in a crock pot full of water overnight. Turn them on the next morning and sprinkle seasoning salt on top. Not rocket science. Delicious. Wear the clothes you already own. Stop giving your children a bunch of stuff they don’t need. Work on getting out of debt even if it seems overwhelming right now. You may have to drive around the budgeting pump a few times to get your bearings. But take it from someone who has been there. Perseverance pays off.
For more information about Lisa Smartt, visit her Web site lisasmartt.com.
Published in The Messenger 11.4.09
Lisa Smartt, The Smartt View