A very rich person should leave his kids enough to do anything but not enough to do nothing. Warren Buffet

Romans 13:8 Don’t run up debts, except for the huge debt of love you owe each other. When you love others, you complete what the law has been after all along. (MSG)

It’s better to go to bed hungry, than to wake up in debt & broke.

We believe overcoming financial bondage is one of the greatest struggles for anyone seeking financial freedom. Many of you only dream of saving money. In many instances you do not experience financial health because you are trying to borrow yourself into wealth. You want to look rich to cover your raggedness. You desire to appear prosperous to hide your poverty. You feel that wealth can heal your wounded-ness.

Many of you do not see anything wrong with living in debt. The more I can borrow the better. I didn’t either at first; just like the story of the frog . I’m told if you put a frog in a pot of water on a stove with no lid, and gradually turn up the heat, the frog will remain in the pot until it is cooked alive, even though the frog has the ability to easily jump out of the pot at anytime.

Every time you borrow money, you’re robbing your future legacy.

Initially I felt debt was a good thing; just a financial tool. It allowed me to obtain things I felt I needed  now and I could pay for it later….WOW! That sounded like a good deal… Just like when the serpent lied to Eve in the Garden of Eden. He told Eve if she ate of the tree of good and evil she would not “surely die”. Listen to me people, if you play with snakes you will get bitten.

Debt has been successfully marketed by banks and financial institutions in the United States as your pathway to prosperity. As a result, many of you have found ourselves in financial bondage with little or no hope of ever experiencing financial freedom again.

SOW 70Freedom from debt is worth any amount you can earn.

If you are in bondage because of debt, your first step into financial freedom is to admit your finances are out of control. If you continue to live in denial, you won’t seek help and you won’t break free.  The Bible says that “the borrower is slave to the lender”. Ask God, in prayer, for the power  to break break free of  debt. With God, and a made up mind, you can experience financial freedom.

Prayer of Blessing: Lord, help me to become wise with money.

Michael J. Vance is the co-host of a podcast Better Husband Father Man hub for all things; parenting, marriage, and self-improvement. He is a financial & benefit risk manager with Hundley Batts & Associates Insurance Agency  and co-founder of Stewardshipofwealth.com  Ardella Vance volunteers her time, talents, and financial resources to causes she is passionate about. She is a gifted educator and a Master Guide in the Pathfinder Club, a global organization empowered to teach life and leadership skills to young people. The Vances have been married well over 3 decades and share their lives with four adult children and ten exceptional grandchildren. They currently reside in Huntsville, Alabama and blog from their workbook “Stewardship of Wealth”.

Advertisements

Only by God’s grace have I made it to see today and only by God’s grace will I ever see tomorrow. Jesse Owens

I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns. Philippians 1:6 (NLT)

To Move to The Next Level Your Spirit Must Be Stretched

Level 4 Stewards have taken care of business. They have a last will and testament  in place and a financial plan for the golden years. (Age 70 is now the new 65 for retirement) Level 4 Steward continues to  develop their talents and abilities well beyond their 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. Level 4 Stewards are always growing mentally, spiritually, and emotionally. They age gracefully with wisdom and live exceptionally active lives.

Are you called to a higher level of stewardship? Are there pieces of your life you know needs to change.  We define stewardship from a holistic perspective. Beginning with our body temple.   How are  you taking care of yourself? Are you positively pushing yourself  beyond your physical boundaries by making healthy choices daily.

Every Next Level Of Your Life Will Demand A Better Version Of You

Gound Zero

Have you prioritize your time in relationship to your life goals,  dreams and  purpose?  Moments in US history like September 11th can change your priorities forever.  Level 4 Stewardship must learn when to say no to the good in order to say yes to the great. They prioritize  activities  that  align with their life mission.

What is your bucket list of  things you want very much to accomplish, experience or become.  What gifts have you been given that you have laid aside  that you need to pick back up. Ardella and I have  always loved music, it is a lifelong passion we’ve both had since childhood.  Over the years  we have found creative ways to  keep  the music  playing in our souls and share our lifetime passion of music with others. Don’t die with your music still in you.

Obtaining Next Level Results,  Requires Obtaining Next Level Thinking

The Level 4 stewards intentionally mentors and sows into the lives of  the next  generation. They willingly share their life experiences and resources with family, friends and meaningful others.  The Level 4 stewards looks for ways to significantly impact the lives of people around them and the community they serve. They believe in the Givers Gain philosophy or law of reciprocity.

Prayer of Blessing: Lord, where You lead I will follow.

Michael J. Vance is the co-host of a podcast Better Husband Father Man hub for all things; parenting, marriage, and self-improvement. He is a financial & benefit risk manager with Hundley Batts & Associates Insurance Agency  and co-founder of Stewardshipofwealth.com  Ardella Vance volunteers her time, talents, and financial resources to causes she is passionate about. She is a gifted educator and a Master Guide in the Pathfinder Club, a global organization empowered to teach life and leadership skills to young people. The Vances have been married well over 3 decades and share their lives with four adult children and ten exceptional grandchildren. They currently reside in Huntsville, Alabama and blog from their workbook “Stewardship of Wealth”.

Children learn the value of money and the discipline of self-control through saving. Randy Alcorn

Walking in God’s Favor: The wise man saves for the future, but the foolish man spends whatever he gets. Proverbs 21:20 TLB

 The Struggle to Save

Many of you only dream of saving money. Here’s a quick snapshot of America’s finances. The Wall Street Journal indicates that 70% of all Americans live from paycheck to paycheck. The Oprah Winfrey Show indicated on an online survey that 70% of responders has no savings anywhere. You almost have to pull a gun on Americans to get them to save.

SOW Blog

Preparing For The Storms of Life

We have learned in Financial Peace University (3) key reasons to save money; for emergencies, for purchases and to build wealth. With Ardella and I having careers in the academic and risk management arena for over 25 years, we label emergencies in 5 categories we call the 5 storms of life or the 5D’s.

1Disasters – Car accidents, weather related perils, any unexpected incidents.

2Disability – Any physical condition that prevents your daily living activities.

3Downsized – Loss of employment, bankruptcy or divorce.

4Death – The loss of a person who contributes to your financial well being

5Deployment- Active& reserve military called to serve 6 or more months away

If you want to become a faithful steward you must begin the process of saving money. Moving to a higher level of stewardship requires dedication, discipline and diligence. Living the life of surplus and overflow takes wisdom.

If You Are Saving, You Are Succeeding.

Many of you have struggled so long in your financial lives you get comfortable with a life of stability. Now is not the time to rest, keep moving. There is so much God have for you to learn, experience and become. You must choose to make saving a top priority. The choice can change your family tree.

Prayer of Blessing: Lord, help us to become savers.

Michael J. Vance is the co-host of a podcast Better Husband Father Man hub for all things; parenting, marriage, and self-improvement. He is a financial & benefit risk manager with Hundley Batts & Associates Insurance Agency  and co-founder of Stewardshipofwealth.com  Ardella Vance volunteers her time, talents, and financial resources to causes she is passionate about. She is a gifted educator and a Master Guide in the Pathfinder Club, a global organization empowered to teach life and leadership skills to young people. The Vances have been married well over 3 decades and share their lives with four adult children and ten exceptional grandchildren. They currently reside in Huntsville, Alabama and blog from their workbook “Stewardship of Wealth”.

One of the greatest needs of the modern Christian church is for it disciples to swim away from the shallow banks of peripheral Christian living and plunge into the deep water of faith and loyalty. Julius Scruggs

Walking in God’s Favor: If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.  John 15:7  KJ

A Life, If Well Lived, Is Long Enough 

Level 4 Stewards realize the importance of time and manage their time wisely.  Staying connected to the Source is always their first priority. Level 4 stewards are aware that the choices you make today will impact future generations.  So staying connecting to the Source is critical to the success of your life legacy.

We agree with what President Barack Obama says  “Focusing your life solely on making a buck shows a certain poverty of ambition. It asks too little of yourself. Because it’s only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you realize your true potential”.

Better HFM

We have discovered in our spiritual journey, when we allow God lordship over our will, dreams, and ambitions we experience more peace, love and happiness in our world. God’s blessings in the life of  the Level 4 Steward will also be a blessing in the life of others. We believe God blesses the lives of Level 4 Stewards so they can be an example of  what He can do in a life that is connected to the Source.

Does Your Life Empower Others?

We have developed the daily practice of investing time in prayer.  This allows us to say no to the good in order  to say yes to the great.  For example, in order for us to live a healthy life style we say no to certain foods that may taste good and yes to foods that gives us proper nutrition to support our goal of healthy living.

Here’s another example, in order for us to live a life style of financial freedom we avoid debt and say yes to investing to support our goal of building generational wealth. The tension for Level 4 Stewardship is the ability to stay connected to the Source when you can have, do, and be anything you desire.

A Person Striving To Become Better, Leads By Example

We believe connectivity to God is the source of all blessings.  Connectivity to people is the how the blessings flow from the Source into your life. We love what Mary Kay Ash  said “Don’t limit yourself.”

SOW

Many people limit themselves to what they think they can do. You can go as far a your faith takes you. What you believe through Christ,  you can achieve.  Level 4 Stewards are determined to stay connected to the Source and intentionally practices the process of connecting to others.

Prayer of Blessing: Lord keep us connected to You.

Michael J. Vance is the co-host of a weekly podcast Better Husband Father Man hub for all things; parenting, marriage, and self-improvement. He is a financial & benefit risk manager with Hundley Batts & Associates Insurance Agency  and co-founder of Stewardshipofwealth.com  Ardella Vance volunteers her time, talents, and financial resources to causes she is passionate about. She is a gifted educator and a Master Guide in the Pathfinder Club, a global organization empowered to teach life and leadership skills to young people. The Vances have been married well over 3 decades and share their lives with four adult children and ten exceptional grandchildren. They currently reside in Huntsville, Alabama and blog from their workbook “Stewardship of Wealth”.

Does Love Motivates Your Decisions?

Walking in God’s Favor: Love God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength and with all your mind and love your neighbor as yourself. Luke 20:27 NIV

We love others better, when we love God first

Paris 15

Faithful stewards have discovered in their  spiritual journey that God’s nature is love.  That He gives each of you the freedom to discover his loving nature for yourself.  The Creator freely gives you opportunities to experience His divine love.  Faithful stewards understand that He only wants what is best for your good and His glory.

The Creator has a purpose for your life and He is calling you to a higher level of stewardship. I love what the book of Jeremiah says in chapter 29 verse 11. “I know the plan I have for you, declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans for your hope and a future”. Wow! Now that is the kind of God I choose to worship.  I know He has everything under control. When you learn to let go and let God….that’s when things start happening.

A happy marriage requires falling in love over and over again with the same person

10583990_10203664620729399_5113568531027268905_n

I clearly remember when I began the process of looking for a life partner. I prayed that the woman who I planned to marry would be someone who truly loved God.  That she would be someone I could spiritually connect with. It was very important to me that we shared our love for God with one another. I was raised in a home where I observed my parents praying to God with one another, worshiping God with one another, and trusting in God with one another. That seemed to be high priority in their relationship.

I am so thankful for God bringing Ardella into my life. Every area I have allowed Ardella to touch in my life has turned to gold. I have prospered in my spiritual life, family life, professional life and financial  life.  Over the years God has blessed our marriage, our family, and our lives as we continue to grow more in love with Him as well as each other.

God loves you everyday

Faithful stewards have learned to make intimacy with God their highest priority. God is faithful. He loves you with an unending love. There are no boundaries to God’s love for each of you.

Prayer of Blessing: Lord, Thank You for loving us without limits.

Michael J. Vance is the co-host of a weekly podcast Better Husband Father Man hub for all things; parenting, marriage, and self-improvement. He is a financial & benefit risk manager with Hundley Batts & Associates Insurance Agency  and co-founder of Stewardshipofwealth.com  Ardella Vance volunteers her time, talents, and financial resources to causes she is passionate about. She is a gifted educator and a Master Guide in the Pathfinder Club, a global organization empowered to teach life and leadership skills to young people. The Vances have been married well over 3 decades and share their lives with four adult children and nine exceptional grandchildren. They currently reside in Huntsville, Alabama and blog from their workbook “Stewardship of Wealth”.

Surplus Wealth is a sacred trust which its possessor is bound to administer in his lifetime for the good of the community. Andrew Carnegie

Walking In God’s Favor: Remember: A stingy planter gets a stingy crop; a lavish planter gets a lavish crop. I want each of you to take plenty of time to think it over, and make up your own mind what you will give. That will protect you against sob stories and arm-twisting. God loves it when the giver delights in the giving. 2 Corinthians 9:7 MSG

Your Greatness Is In What You Give, Not What You Own

Why would God say He loves a cheerful giver? Giving is an emotional experience that involves the heart.  The word of God says that where your treasures are, that’s where your heart will be also. You must make giving a part of your day to day Christian experience. Here’s how to start.

  • Pray…Ask for God’s power to change your heart. David asked  God for a clean heart. Only God has the ability to change hearts. God can transform your thinking if you give Him permission.
  • Seek…Discover God’s wisdom in His Word. Turn off the TV,  iPad, cell phone and unplug. Get into a regular Bible study group. How can you walk in God’s wisdom if you rarely read His divine road map?
  • Fellowship…Rub shoulders with people who are generous givers of their time, talents, treasure (money) & temple(body) in honor of God. Hang around people who live a stewardship lifestyle and are great examples of faithfulness.
  • Share…Tell your experience to others of how God has blessed your faithfulness. Many times you do not realize God is all you need, until God is all you got.

You Do Not Have To Be Wealthy To Give Generously

People can give more when they are not in bondage to debt and credit cards.  It is difficult to give cheerfully to the Kingdom when you have overextended yourself financially. Learn to say “No” to the person in the mirror and “Yes” to the Giver & Creator of life.

49454708_10215594828377134_8989137856404389888_n

To Move Forward You Must Give Back

You are invited January 27th to our Financial Peace University Class held at First Church 1303 Evangel Drive Huntsville, Alabama. Ardella and I will share our story how Financial Peace University helped us to become debt- free. The class is open to the community and you are welcome.

Prayer of Blessing: Lord, teach us to become generously givers.

Michael J. Vance is the co-host of a weekly podcast Better Husband Father Man hub for all things; parenting, marriage, and self-improvement. He is a financial & benefit risk manager with Hundley Batts & Associates Insurance Agency  and co-founder of Stewardshipofwealth.com  Ardella Vance volunteers her time, talents, and financial resources to causes she is passionate about. She is a gifted educator and a Master Guide in the Pathfinder Club, a global organization empowered to teach life and leadership skills to young people. The Vances have been married well over 3 decades and share their lives with four adult children and nine exceptional grandchildren. They currently reside in Huntsville, Alabama and blog from their workbook “Stewardship of Wealth”.

What I possess God owns. Howard Dayton

Walking In God’s Favor: Don’t worry about anything. Instead pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank Him for all He has done. Philippians 4:6 NLT

Stewardship Principles For Life

We were first introduced to stewardship principles by Elder Harold Lee. A young family with four children, Ardella was a stay-at-home mom, while I was serving in the United States Navy at Rough & Ready Island in Stockton, California. Our life’s spiritual journey has never been the same.

God has placed in each of you an abundance of potential, and you must make the choice to develop, or not to develop your God-given gifts. After learning and practicing stewardship principles for over 25 years, we have discovered certain levels of stewardship in which people are living consciously or unconsciously, each day of lives.

FPU 1

Level 1 Stewardship Life Lessons

The first lesson you must learn in Level 1 Stewardship, is that God is the Creater/Owner of everything, and you are only a manager, apprentice, or steward. This spiritual truth must become the foundation of your life. You can easily become a millionaire and be a million miles away from God, if you do not internalize this truth.

The second lesson you must learn in Level 1 Stewardship, is to put your faith and trust in God. God will supply all you need according to His riches in glory. The wiser steward you become, the more God can trust you with, because He knows you can handle it. The Level 1 Steward walks by faith and not by sight.

Leadership Is About Stewardship Not Ownership

Why is it, when God blesses you with a good education, you worship the education? God blesses you with a successful business, and you worship the business. God blesses you with talent, and you worship the talent. Instead of worshiping the Gift Giver, you worship the gifts. The Level 1 Steward learns to worship God as Creator/ Owner and giver of all gifts. Stay focused on the dream God has placed inside you. Remember keep praying, keep believing with God all things are possible.

You are welcome to visit our Financial Peace University January 27th at 4pm.  Discover how practicing stewardship principles can change your life.

Prayer of Blessing: Lord teach us to become faithful stewards.

Michael J. Vance is the president of the Huntsville Independent Insurance Agents Association co-founder of Stewardship Of Wealth.com and a financial & benefit-risk manager with Hundley Batts & Associates Insurance Agency   Ardella Vance volunteers her time, talents, and financial resources to causes she is passionate about. She is a gifted educator and a Master Guide in the Pathfinders Club, a global organization empowered to teach life and leadership skills to young people. The Vance’s have been married well over 3 decades and share their lives with four adult children and nine grandchildren. They currently reside in Huntsville Alabama, and blog from their financial guide ”Stewardship of Wealth“.