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The Heart Behind Giving and Being Generous

We’re almost one month into the new year, and by now you’ve had time to update your checkbook, hang the new wall calendar, begin your new one year study bible and reconsider most of you new year’s resolutions ☺ Let’s start by taking a look at what the Bible says about saving and giving.

In Proverbs 21:20, wise King Solomon wrote, “The wise man saves for the future; the foolish man spends whatever he gets.”  Saving is simply not spending everything today, so you’ll have something to spend in the future.  It’s legitimate to save and invest for things like taking care of your family, providing for retirement and investing for your children’s education.

But we need to balance saving and investing with being generous because if we just focus on piling up our investments that’s where our heart is going to be drawn. Luke 12:34 says, “For where your treasure is there is your heart also.”  The Bible consistently encourages us to keep our heart focused on loving and serving the Lord. So it is incredibly important to balance saving with giving. I’m going to suggest something pretty radical.  I believe we should be giving as much as we contribute to our savings and investments each year to protect our hearts.

Recommended article: Your 10 Most Important Financial Moves for 2014 at www.SoundMindInvesting.com

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Spending: Ways You Can Save Your Energy Dollars

Because I live in Florida, I don’t have a lot of experience in saving energy dollars during the winter, but I know someone who does. My wife, Bev, is from Maine and most of her family still lives there, so we hear a lot about how to save money and stay warm even when the temperature gets way below zero.

  • Use door snakes and chimney balloons. The balloons do a better job of sealing than steel dampers that may become warped.
  • Caulk windows, doors, and around electrical outlets. Many power companies will do an energy audit for free.
  • Energy Film on some windows prevents heat loss in the winter, and don’t forget to close doors to unused rooms and close off vents.
  • Turn down heating when you’re not at home for days at a time. Be careful when setting the thermostat below 60 degrees to avoid pipes freezing on the colder outer walls of the house.
  • Try to live at 68 degrees in the winter and wear sweaters. It may take a few days to get used to the lower temperature, but you will adapt and may even feel less sleepy and more energetic.
  • Set your water heater to no more than 120 degrees and wrap it with a thermo-blanket.
  • This next suggestion works regardless of the season. Unplug chargers when you’re not using them, because plugged in chargers use power, even if they are not charging anything.

Well, there you have it . . . good suggestions on saving energy dollars during the winter. And come summer time, I’ll be able to give you some first-hand advice on how to save on air conditioning from hot and humid Florida

Warmly in Christ,

Howard Dayton