Lessons from Luke: no shirt, no staff, no money

Another edition of our ongoing series entitled, Lessons from Luke.  Since the Gospel of Luke was most likely written to a man of means, a man by the name of Theophilus, Luke spends much of the book discussing the issues of wealth and money. Here at Gather Little by Little, we have been systematically moving through the book in an attempt to survey all of the various statements about money that it contains. Several weeks ago, we discussed the story of the Matthew the Tax Collector. Our passage today comes from Luke 9:1-5:

Family stages of Christmas gift giving, Part II

On Monday, I wrote about the sociology of the first few stages of Christmas gift giving.

These stages are not meant to be exhaustive, there are all kinds of idiosyncratic changes that many of us could make based on differing Christmas traditions, blended families, differing socio-economic status and a host of other factors. Also, many of us might experience several of these stages at the same time when dealing with different branches of the family tree.

Here is the second half of the list:

Family stages of Christmas gift giving, Part I

I follow a few personal finance bloggers via Twitter, one of whom is Money Crashers. Last weekend Money Crashers hosted an #MCchat where the discussion revolved around Christmas, especially the family gift-giving aspect of the holiday.

The social media exchange piqued quite a few thoughts about gift giving. I thought I would put on my sociologist hat and share some of those thoughts. I think that most families go through similar stages of gift giving at Christmas. Each stage of life presents new challenges for the tradition and even different possibilities for offense and hurt . . .

Discontentment undermines frugality

Last week I wrote about how my discomfort at caring for my children for four days by myself was influencing me to spend more money. I recognized the fact that discomfort can affect the spending of even the most frugal spender.

But there is an even bigger threat to frugality: the desire for more and better and bigger. It is a desire that is never satisfied. A wealthy man was once famously asked how much money it would take to satisfy him, he replied: “just a little bit more”. His response was a wry nod to the human condition. We are never satisfied and the few among us who learn to control the natural desire for more are the happiest – regardless of their socio-economic status.

Discomfort undermines frugality

Ookaay . . . I was away from the internet more than usual this weekend (due to my wife’s absence) and I came back to a raging controversy.

Raging might not be quite the right word, but I think that my hastily typed essay from last Friday may have been misunderstood – quite possibly due to my poor use of English. Last Thursday night, as Mrs. Stew was making plans to leave town for four days, I wrote about how the prospect of being a single caregiver to three children for four days had the effect of undermining my usual bent toward frugality. A commenter or two took me to task – you can read all about it here and I might have deserved it. Please allow me to explain myself a little more completely.

Famous quotes about money

Some statements about money for your enjoyment today. Some true . . . some not so true . . . some will make you think.

He that is of the opinion money will do everything may well be suspected of doing everything for money. – Benjamin Franklin

Money was never a big motivation for me, except as a way to keep score. The real excitement is playing the game. – Donald Trump

My problem lies in reconciling my gross habits with my net income. – Errol Flynn

Financial Challenges from Proverbs 22

A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, and favor is better than silver or gold.

God has promised to meet your needs, you do not need to trade your good character or reputation in order to get ahead in life. After all, our lives are “but a vapor” in light of eternity. Do right in every circumstance.

The rich and the poor meet together; the LORD is the maker of them all.

Visualize debt freedom


I often struggle with my weight, eating properly, getting exercise and all that goes with it. I have learned the one way to motivate myself is to visualize the goal. To think about how it feels to bend over and tie my shoes without losing breath, to imagine being able to button one’s pants without holding my breath and to imagine not having the extra weight on my knees.

Lazy = No money


Okay, that title was just to get your attention. People who have little money are certainly not all lazy. A lot of people struggle to make ends meet while still working hard. My point is that many times we allow money leaks into our lives simply because of laziness.

Lazy people miss out on deals or discounts because of procrastination. Coupons? Too hard to cut out and use.

What about sweat equity? Sometimes a house owned by a lazy person does not appreciate because he simply does not make the effort to paint or clean or decorate. He does the bare minimum in his yars and then loses money when it comes time to sell.

How To Support An Unemployed Friend

joblessAt the beginning of the month, the most recent unemployment statistic was published. The USA reached double digits while Canada was close behind with 8.8% (as of June). The scariest aspect about these statistics is to think that once you stop receiving unemployment support payments; you don’t count as “unemployed” anymore. Therefore, the unemployment rate might be 10% in the States, but it is even higher in the “real world”. People stop receiving unemployment support but not necessarily because they have gotten a job.

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