“70% of consumers live paycheck to paycheck.” – Wall Street Journal

“68% of Americans could not cover a $5000 emergency with cash.” – Gallup Poll

“Conflict over money is still the leading cause of divorce.” – Multiple Studies

“5% of the U.S. tithes. Of the 95% remaining, 50% gives less than 2% to charity.” – Barna

As parents and teachers, our aim is to raise kids who become great adults.  While these statistics don’t surprise me, they sadden me.  Why?  Because I don’t want my generation to live like this.  I ESPECIALLY don’t want the next generation to live like this.  Just think; giving kids the tools to win with money could completely change these statistics in the next decade!

There are over 2000 scriptures in the Bible that deal with managing finances.  2000!  Wow!  It’s almost as if God equipped us to manage money successfully!

We have an offering time in Sunday School each and every week.  It’s a great way to teach a mini lesson on finances.  I even wrote a book, 52 Money Lessons, with a new object lesson every week to help illustrate Biblical principles about money.  There are three key areas which are foundational to turning these staggering statistics about money around:

1.  Stewardship.

This simply means managing something that is not yours, but entrusted to you.  Psalm 24:1 says, “The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it.”  It’s all His!  It’s all His – period.  Good managers are entrusted with more to manage.  That’s not intended to be condemning, it’s Biblical.  There is always room to grow and become better managers!  Thank you, God!  We are called to train up a child in the way he should go.  Part of this training should include how to manage God’s resources well!

2.  Contentment.

1 Timothy 6:6 says, “Godliness with contentment is great GAIN.”  I asked myself if the opposite would be true?  Would discontentment lead to great loss?  I observe that babies and young children begin life very content.  You know, the kids who would rather play with the box than the toy in the box!  Then society and advertising convinces us we need the newer, bigger, better thing.  This breeds discontentment and discontentment leads to overspending.  Contentment is definitely something we should be teaching children!

3.  Generosity.

When I read about generosity in the scriptures, the result I see is increase.  Choosing to be generous is always up to us, but there is a principle at play and that principle is “givers gain.”  Proverbs 11:24 says, “There are those who generously scatter abroad and yet increase more; there are those who withhold more than is fitting, but it results only in want.”  Generosity doesn’t only benefit us, it is how God’s work gets funded on this earth.  According to Mike Holmes, If believers upped their giving to 10 percent there would be an additional $165 billion to use for kingdom work throughout the earth!

The sooner we start talking about these principles, the bigger the change we’ll see in our society!  You’re never too young to be a good steward!

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Samarah Vermeer is passionate about equipping the next generation with the Word of God! After school, she returned to her small Iowa hometown and spent many years serving in children’s ministry, directing summer camp, and handling church finances. She is now married to her favorite farmer, volunteers in the children’s department at Family Worship Center in Sioux City, IA and writes Sunday School curriculum. Samarah is a graduate of Domata School of Missions and Rhema Bible Training Center. She loves books and bookstores, cooking and cooking shows, deep conversations and traveling to new places-- most likely with some chocolate in her purse.