By Ashley Moore, Crosswalk.com
A Prayer for When Money Is Tight during the Holidays
By Ashley Moore
“Look at the ravens. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for God feeds them. And you are far more valuable to him than any birds! Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? And if worry can’t accomplish a little thing like that, what’s the use of worrying over bigger things? “Look at the lilies and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith? “And don’t be concerned about what to eat and what to drink. Don’t worry about such things. These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers all over the world, but your Father already knows your needs.” - Luke 12:24-30, NLT
One of my family’s biggest sources of worry is money. We earn our living from my husband’s ever-fluctuating contracting business and my part-time ministry position, all while footing the bill for three kids to go to private school. Needless to say, money is tight. While others are loading their carts with toys, hosting lavish parties, and giving generously to those in need, I'm struggling to keep my scarcity mentality at bay.
A scarcity mentality is when you believe there isn’t enough of a particular resource. The result? Someone will have to go without something. And the problem with this mindset is that it can make people overly inwardly focused and selfish. We don’t want to be the one who has to sacrifice, so we attempt to store up or cling to whatever resources we have or accumulate more.
Do any of the following scenarios ring true for you this holiday season?
- Christmas is coming, and my husband's bonus wasn't what we expected. How will we buy gifts?
- We can barely get ahead of all our bills. We can't sponsor a child in need this Christmas.
- Food prices keep rising! We can't afford to open our home and feed visitors this year.
During the holidays, we are easily convinced with marketing strategies that we need to spend a lot of money to make holiday gatherings special, provide lavish gifts, and shop all the holiday deals. This pressure makes me cling to my wallet and fret about our already overextended budget. Do you feel this way too? Or maybe you have financial freedom but are overly anxious about the future, keeping a tight grip on your earnings.
I’m always comforted by the words of our savior in the book of Luke. He reminded us of the timeless truth that He loves us and always provides for us. And He sprinkled proof of this truth throughout His creation. And because of this, we really can be free of worry and a scarcity mentality, even during the holidays.
Worry causes us to go against God’s desire for His people to be generous. So this holiday season, let’s combat that temptation by doing what Jesus said. Look at the birds and the flowers and remember that we don’t have to strive or store up resources. Let’s look at our budget and decide in our hearts what we can give cheerfully, without the pressure from the world or the expectations of others (2 Corinthians 9:7). And finally, trust that God will meet our needs and the needs of others when money is tight.
Worrying has never changed anything or solved our family’s money problems. What has changed our money problems? Praying and trusting God’s Word over what we understand about circumstances has changed our mindset about our money altogether. So this holiday season, let’s worry a little less and trust God a little more.
Thank you for your love and provision. We can trust each day you give us our daily bread, and you know exactly what we need. Lord, forgive us when we turn inward because of a scarcity mindset. Lord, you are a God of abundance, and you turn our little offerings of generosity into more than enough. Lord, I pray for those struggling this holiday season with money problems. God, remind them that you are Jehovah Jireh, our provider. Help us to be creative in our generosity by giving our time or talents or in other ways. Help us stay free from worrying and focusing on what we don’t have, by praising you for all the blessings we do have.
In Jesus’ name, amen.
Photo credit: ©Getty Images/Kerkez
Ashley Moore is a writer and host of be the two™podcast. She is known for her relatability and for passionately writing and speaking about mental, emotional, and relational health from a biblical worldview. She has written for Kingdom Edge Magazine, Guideposts, Crosswalk, The Secret Place, enLIVEn, The Bubbling Brook and more. If Ashley isn't writing, you can find her with her husband, three children, and two floppy-eared Goldens on their south Georgia farmland. The best way to connect with Ashley is to grab a free devotional or Bible study and join her newsletter at free.ashleynicolemoore.com.
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