A lot of people really enjoy cakes. Me, however, I have always been a pie guy – apple, blueberry, lemon meringue, coconut pie. You name it, if it’s in a pie, I’ll eat it- within reason, of course. Karen, my wife, on the other hand,isn’t a huge fan of pies, but loves cake. A good cake has some key ingredients. If you look at most cake recipes: Two of the main ingredients include eggs and flour. You can attempt to substitute these ingredients, but in most cases you sacrifice the taste. With money management, if you miss two of the main ingredients, it can be much more of a disaster. This week we’ll look at two important ingredients to be successful with money.
The first key ingredient in any relationship is honesty. Proverbs 21:6 makes this quite clear: “A fortune made by a lying tongue is a fleeting vapor and a deadly snare”. If we are dishonest in our business practices, our financial matters, work life, and other ways we acquire wealth, you may still hold the treasures but you risk it all being washed away. Matthew 16:26 helps us sort that out: “What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?”
When Dave came to see me, the look on his face told the whole story. He looked like he had the wind knocked right out of him. “Jay, I should have listened to you”. Years ago when you gave me advice, I never listened, now this”. Dave’s financial advisor, Brad had attempted to hang himself after it was discovered he had stolen tens of million dollars from his clients. Dave, who had most of his life savings with Dave, awoke to the news that he would probably never see much, if any of that money again. Lives were set in chaos because of the greed and lack of honesty that Brad took in his business. Like a house of cards, the whole thing came crashing down. Brad also lost everything: his wife, his radio station, his mansions, cars, and his freedom. He is now in prison for at least 20 years. Was it worth it? No amount of money is worth it when it comes at a price.
We need to be honest in all of our financial dealings: in our businesses, in the workplace, and in our financial transactions. Honest profits make good profits. Make it a top priority to be honest with your fellow workers, your customers, and those you interact with on business and personal matters.
What are some areas of your financial life where you were not completely honesty?
What effect did this lack of honesty have on those involved? On you?
How could you have done things differently?