The Everyday Girl Guide to: James and My Life (James 4:1-3)

July 12, 2013

I’m going to step all over my own toes today.  Ouch.  I’m feeling it already…

4 What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

James 4:1-3

I have so many of these things that I don’t even know where to start.  I guess I’ll start at the beginning.

What causes fights and quarrels among you?  Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you?

I’m a divorced mom.  I don’t exactly get along with my ex, especially when it comes to how to raise our kids (whatever we once believed the same, we now seem to believe the opposite).  But when I fight with him, am I fighting for my kids, for my own desires, or for what’s right with God?  This makes me uncomfortable (which is a good thing for growth, but terrible for peace of mind).  It doesn’t help that I’m naturally a bit on the… pugilistic side.  I’m going to have to work on that.

You do not have because you do not ask God.

You’d be surprised (or maybe you wouldn’t, especially if you know me well) how many times I try to do things on my own instead of asking God.  It’s no wonder I’ve been stuck in a very deep rut for a while!  I’ve gotten better about letting people help me, but I’m still terrible about asking God for help.  Hopefully I’ll use this wake-up call to change that.

When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

In a lot of ways, this is the most painful part of this section.  Yes, my finances are tight, but how many times have they ended up tight because I just had to have a chai tea latte from Starbucks?  How often do I think I need to wow my kids with a purchase instead of teaching them to be good about finances?  Worse… how often have I put my tithing before myself lately?

I would still be paying off debt if I watched my spending more closely… but I’d be further along.

I would still be tight, financially, at the end of each month if I watched my spending more closely… but maybe not so tight that I have to not buy any groceries for five days just to hold off to the next paycheck.

I have this crazy thought in my head that I deserve to have an occasional nice treat.  Maybe.  But I find that if I do it once, I do it again very soon after. 

Once upon a time, I was very good at denying myself temporary pleasures for the long-term.  I could hang on to a $20 for emergencies for a very long time.  I lost that somewhere in my five or so years of prosperity during my marriage.  I need to find it again.

Until then, it’s no wonder I don’t have.  If God blessed me with a financial windfall, I’d just blow it into the wind.  Time to fix that.

 

If you struggle with financial issues, there are two Christian writers I wholeheartedly endorse.  Crown Financial Ministries speaks financial truth in a no-nonsense manner.  Dave Ramsey seems to rub some people the wrong way, but I’ve never heard him say something that was either contrary to the Bible or financially stupid (not that I’ve checked everything, this is just my personal take).  I get nothing for mentioning either of these sites.  Take from them what you will.

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One Response to “The Everyday Girl Guide to: James and My Life (James 4:1-3)”

  1. N Says:

    I think for the same reasons we are not staying in broken relationships for the sake of our kids, we should think about every other aspect of being divorced and what the kids live with and without. Your married name is your husband`s name and your maiden name is yours , to be free from that relationship even if the kids have his name it`s best to be your own person, you`re still the mom that won`t change , he is still the dad. We dont have a wedding band or home or games or outings or all the use to be`s together so why have the name. One thing i have been thinking of and it was my 5 yr old`s idea is to hiphernate her last name with mine. so she has both.

    I was recently featured in the news paper for my work and i was refered to as my husband`s last name through out the article and I resent that it does not sound like me, i would prefer my first name but if i had my maiden name last would be be ok. I also had a home daycare and i wanted it to be a family recognised name but i couldnt give it my husband`s last name so i gave my first name. I think it also has to do with your family and how you want to be recognised to anyone anywhere.I am not divorced yet, hence the last name (not mine).


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