Gods Money Matters - Articles

Read our article to know more about financial planning, tips, how to save your money, personal finance and money management in a biblical way and much more.

Time to Pay the Piper—Christmas Gets Revenge

Darren Laudenbach - Friday, March 03, 2017

Now that it’s March, you’re probably starting to receive the bills from Christmas credit card spending, and perhaps the sticker shock has had a chance to sink in now. It can be quite sobering to discover just how much you spent over the Christmas holiday, especially if you used a lot of credit card action in order to cover gifts and activities. Let’s break this vicious cycle and get rid of the Christmas hangover forever so that you never have to fear Christmas revenge again!

 

Don’t Use Cards

One of the best pieces of advice that can be offered is to avoid using those cards altogether, even if it means your gift giving is less than ideal. Those who truly love you will understand when you explain that you’re trying a new approach to Christmas giving, and those who don’t won’t ever be pleased anyway, so don’t worry about them. Since it’s so early in the year, you have plenty of time to start saving up, but here are some tips to help out along the way, so that by the time the holiday season arrives, you’re ready ahead of the game.

Tips for Gift Giving

  1. Establish a savings account just for giving, such as birthdays, Christmas and similar events, and only purchase gifts using those funds. You can do all sorts of odd projects to fill this account, from making handmade things and selling them to storing loose change each day. Put whatever is in your pocket into a glass jar or piggy bank. It really adds up quickly!
  2. Make gifts throughout the year. Since there is about nine months left until the next Christmas season, consider making gifts using whatever talents God has given you. From hand-drawn artwork to sewing projects, most people cherish a gift specially made for them.
  3. Take advantage of sales when possible. If you have the money without dipping into anything important, such as from your discretionary fund or savings account, stock up on items as they become available through online sales, flea markets, artisan stalls, or friends donating items. Keep items in a secure place, especially if you have kids, and see what you have at the end of the year. You might be surprised at how many gifts are accounted for already!
  4. Keep it simple! I can’t stress enough how important this is, especially if you’re on a tight budget. One of the fastest ways to ruin the entire year of financial planning is by vastly overspending during the holiday season. One rule of thumb is to give one big ticket item per immediate family member, and no more than three small items along with it. In fact, you can even stick to one big ticket item for the whole family (such as a new television or video game system), and just do two small gifts for each individual.

This Too Shall Pass

Remember that this season of watching pennies will end, because your hard work and dedication to financial freedom will pay off in the long run. Before you know it, you’ll have money put aside to buy better gifts if you desire, and without putting a serious dent in your budget for the next six months. Just be sure to reward yourself (and your spouse if you have one) throughout the year so that you don’t get burned out. I’ll leave you with a great passage for encouragement:

 And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” – Galatians 6:9