In our family's conversion to a one income family, the biggest challenge has been to learn to "need" less. I put need in quotations because so many of our "needs" we have found are actually "wants". I am not saying in writing this post that we have arrived, what we have done is realize that our "needs" and our "wants" have often confused as being all "needs". We have come to realize that we have so much and we really can live with "less". Our "less" is someone else's luxury.
As a family and as a person we have so much! I have a lovely 1,800 square foot home (that is gorgeous thanks to my husband and father). Yet, I often find myself thinking "If only I had a sun room, or a garage, or bigger children's rooms. We currently have two cars, we are no longer a single car family, but I look at our older (1999 and 1993) cars and think, "I would love a newer car." I look in my closet and even though I am clothed I want more, better, newer clothes, hoping they will make me feel younger, prettier and sexier. We eat mostly organic, whole, grass fed foods, but I find myself thinking, "Am I doing enough? Should we go grain free, dairy free, completely processed food free? Am I missing something that I should be doing?"
I find myself reading, reading, reading, wanting to find the best home school "curriculum", healthy diet, financial plan, home business ideas, child raising ideas and encouragement. When what I really need to do is STOP and listen to the pages of scripture whisper God's promises and warnings in my ear. Today I stopped to listen to a long ago memorized passage. God was, has been, and will continue to whisper it in my ear.
"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?
Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?
Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?
"And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don't work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are.
And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?
So don't worry about these things, saying, 'What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?'
These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs.
Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.
So don't worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today's trouble is enough for today."
I am to do the best with what God has given me. Because truly He has given it to me. I might not always get what I WANT but I will always have what I NEED. Although my and God's definition of "need" may be two totally different things. He knows what I need versus what I want.
So this week when I was thinking of that extra $12,000 dollars per year that I think our family needs, I was reminded that God has faithfully provided for us over the past few years without it and He will continue to do so if he wants us to remain as a single income family. How or if that happens are up to Him, I just have to be open to hearing his whispers.
Thanks for listening!