Providing for the Family

1 Timothy 5:1–16

Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own
household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. / 1 Timothy
5:8

Recently a friend recommended a course offered at her church titled “Financial
Self-Defense.” My first thought was that the church should offer another one
called “Financial CPR” for those whose finances need complete resuscitation.

My husband and I are financial idiots. We continue to be thankful for those
smarter than we are who are willing to step alongside us to walk us through
mortgage paperwork and insurance headaches. In keeping with our simple
financial minds, our financial goals are pretty simple: tithe and give
offerings faithfully; get out—and stay out—of debt (I’m hoping we’ll get there
yet!); and take care of our family, including our parents, should that become
necessary.

But, like most people, we have times of severe financial stress. One of the
worst times was when our children were young and the furnace in our big, old
house gave out for good. It was December, a time when it starts to get really
cold in Illinois, where we live. And December is also a time when our bank
account is emptier than usual because of Christmas spending.

Our furnace repairman was a deacon at our church, and he encouraged us to let
our church help us pay for the furnace through the benevolent fund. It’s an
extremely humbling experience to lean on your Christian brothers and sisters
this way, but we gratefully accepted the help. As recipients of that financial
aid, we now are more keenly aware of the importance of giving to the
benevolent fund at our church. We know what it feels like to need a cash
rescue.

Generally, though, David and I work hard to provide for our children—by giving
them, not a luxurious life, but a simple, safe and healthy one. This is a
Biblical concept. The apostle Paul wrote that it is a shame for believers not
to set a loving example by generously providing for their own households. The
church plays a role in helping those who are alone in the world—those who are
orphaned, widowed or abandoned. But Paul reminded Timothy that Christians who
fail to take responsibility for their own families are worse than unbelievers.
That’s quite a reminder!

David and I need God’s help to achieve our financial goals, and we’re trusting
God to help us be the ones to provide for the needs of our four kids and our
parents. With God’s help, we can keep his admonition in mind to care for our
own household. / Annette LaPlaca

Let’s Talk
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What financial goals do we share as a couple?

Have we encountered difficulties in providing for our own household? How have
we gotten help? In what ways has that assistance helped us become more
discerning about handling money?

How is financially providing for our family part of our calling as Christians?

– Bible Gateway.Com

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