Our budget will have to be squeezed just a little tighter. We got our new budget plan amounts for electricity and gas in August and both went up to a higher amount…sigh. I have to admit that money, more than anything, sends me right over the edge. Our bills are paid on time and quickly now with online payment, but just the mere thought of having to handle money makes my stomach churn. We’re in that classic middle class syndrome of having enough to pay bills and get groceries, but very little, if any, leftover.
Even with all that said, we continue to walk in faith. Our budget plan amounts increased, but we also, on faith. have increased our monthly online tithe to our church. No, I’m not doing it for a “prosperity plan” or expecting anything to fall miraculously from heaven. I increased our tithe because I wanted to and because it’s the right thing to do. For many years I admit I was mediocre about committing to a tithe, but now I’m adamant about doing what is right and bringing glory to God in all we do….even our small amount we sacrifice every month.
Going out to a restaurant is a real treat for us as well as having “fun” food or junk food in the house. Our meals are simple, frugal, but delicious. The other day, Sarah found a bag of “popcorn” chicken in the freezer and exclaimed, “Mom, this is rich people’s food!” I explained that the only reason we had it was because it was on sale and I had an insanely high dollar coupon for it. I love to cook for my family, but also acknowledge it has to be within reason. No fancy gourmet expensive meals or buying spices that I’ll only use once; we are very careful to stay at our allotted amount for groceries. Being frugal, but sensible with our family meals is a challenge, but again, it’s the right thing to do. Blowing our resources at a drive-thru window or eating out several times a week would just not honor God’s faithfulness to us.
This summer I also updated my working wardrobe but it wasn’t from major department stores. My “new” clothes came from local consignment shops and Goodwill. I simply can not justify almost a hundred dollars for a pair of shoes, but $5.00 is more my style. Using our limited resources wisely is the right thing to do, and it’s a more fun to find a bargain than to spend too much money.
God is good and He’s been so very good to us. Watching Daniel slowly recover has been my greatest joy this summer. He still has “tired” days, but he is able to function more now. I know he’s getting better because his stubborn streak has returned! All the things that used to frustrate me, are now blessings returning one by one.
No, we are not financially wealthy, we do not have a large home, we do not have anything extra in our lives right now, but we are blessed beyond measure. Everything we do is measured upon Biblical standards and a desire to bring God’s glory to all we do. We choose to do what’s right, not what we feel, not what others say. We are trusting, breathing, putting one foot in front of the other and God will bless our efforts.