How to Avoid Overspending this Christmas
Each year, Americans are plunged into the deep end of spending during the Christmas Holiday. There are sales at every store and even entire days like Black Friday or Cyber Monday that are dedicated to shopping.
As is the trend every year, Americans are predicted to spend more money this Christmas than any other year prior. With all of these sales and special shopping days attracting our attention the question becomes:
How can we avoid overspending this Christmas?
There are two Biblical ways of looking at Christmas spending. Each method could help you avoid the trappings of overspending this holiday season.
KNOW WHAT YOU CAN SPEND
When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap your field right up to its edge, neither shall you gather the gleanings after your harvest. And you shall not strip your vineyard bare, neither shall you gather the fallen grapes of your vineyard. You shall leave them for the poor and for the sojourner: I am the Lord your God. Leviticus 19:9-10
For so many Americans, myself included, we can find ourselves indulging in our extended purchasing power via borrowing, credit or dipping into savings . After all, we want to give great gifts to our friends and especially our family and children. However, this goes against God's Word.
God desires us not to spend every dollar we have. Yet when we need to borrow or finance purchases we are falling away from that teaching. I am not saying there isn't a time a place for borrowing or financing purchases, but when it comes to Christmas gifts, we must ask ourselves.
Are we spending more than we can afford for those that would be happy with a less expensive gift?
Gallup polls have found that two-thirds of Americans don't have a budget for their household spending. Meaning they don't know how much money is coming in and going out every month so that they can save and spend wisely. Instead, without budgets, Americans are making purchasing decisions without knowledge of if they can afford that purchase or not.
God's people are destroyed by a lack of knowledge (Hosea 4:6). Not knowing how much money you have to spend can destroy your life. We spend a lot of money at Christmas, so our overspending has a major potential to destroy us because we are making informed decisions.
Sit down, make a budget, first for your household bills, then dedicate extra money towards Christmas spending. But remember, God asks us to leave some of our harvest, or income for the poor and the sojourner. Which leads us to the second way you can avoid overspending this Christmas:
FIND A WORTHY CAUSE TO GIVE TO
In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, It is more blessed to give than to receive. Acts 20:35
God's Word tells us it is better to give than to receive. Christmas is usually a real world example of this scripture. We give gifts to friends, family and co-workers. More than any other time of year, we give to those besides ourselves or our immediate family. We should be blessed by those actions.
Not everyone has the opportunity to give, even if they desire to. They don't have the extra money or aren't able to finance Christmas purchases (which might be a good thing). And that is where God asks those that have to give to those in need.
There are many organizations, ministries and charities that ask for gifts to help others during Christmas. To avoid overspending, let's give to those in need. You might ask, "Well how do I do that? It doesn't make sense."
For various reasons, we can often overspend on our loved ones, reaching up to that next level gift. Maybe we overspend because we can't during the year, or because we want to look better off than we are. Let's cut back on going to that next level gift. Instead let's spend less but give to more.
Instead of overspending for a $50 gift for someone, maybe we could give him/her a $10 gift and also give $10 to the worthwhile non-profit of your choice. Thereby saving money but also giving to those in need. Both of which align with God's Word.
It is likely you will feel blessed by giving to those in need as well as giving a gift you can afford to someone your love, instead of overspending just to make a good impression.
Christmas is supposed to be a time of peace and joy, but overspending and putting ourselves in financially strain to keep up with the joneses will steal our peace and joy from us.
Let's try and spend less, but give to more.
If you want to give to someone today, Testimony House does a Christmas outreach for single mom families. We provide Christmas gifts and families needs to those that aren't able to spend at Christmas. Click Here or the flyer for more information or you can give below as well.