"...and I will dwell in the House of the LORD forever!"

Monday, February 7, 2011

How Much Do You Really Spend?

Have you ever considered how much you spend on the small "luxuries" of life? No, I'm not thinking about cars, homes, home renovations, boats, or anything that you have to finance. I'm referring to the day to day, week to week, month to month hobbies or habits you might have. Last week, I read a very interesting article that analyzed this question. It contemplated the trade-offs we make when we don't consider the long term costs of our "pampering", because as the old saying goes, "There's no such thing as a Free Lunch!" The article presumed and argued that if we didn't spend money on certain things, we would have saved the money and earned an average of 8% on our investments. Here are just a few of my favorite expenses on the list:

Item, Today, Over 10 Years , Over 30 Years

Coffee/Donut, $4 a day, $22,389,$190,453

Manicure, $40 a week ,$29,857, $253,969

Golf, $75 a week, $55,983, $634,924

Isn't that amazing? Obviously, these figures aren't exact and they do vary from person to person, but nevertheless, they speak volumes! I'm not too worried about the costs of manicures because I've never had one and I never will, but I'm a chump for coffee and golf! I guess I'll just have to plan ahead, because I will continue my steady relationship with java and the links! However, I don't think I'll pay $75.00 for one round of golf unless it's a special occassion!

But here's the real scary thought: Have you ever considered how much your sin builds up over time? Chances are very good that you will committ a sin today because your human flesh will make a human mistake! Now, multiply your sin, or even sins of today, by 10, 20, and 30 years! I don't know about you, but when I consider my life, it sure does give me new understanding of the words from Isaiah's pen in Isaiah 53:6, "...and the Lord laid on him the iniquity of us all." When I think about how many "iniquities" I will place upon the shoulders of Jesus in my life, I can't help but to think about Calvary! I can't help but to survey the wondrous Cross! And words will never fully describe my appreciation when I read what Isaiah prophesied about the King of Kings, "...but by his wounds we are healed." (Isaiah 53:5) We will all continue to spend money because it costs money to live! And it's ok to spend money from time to time on "luxuries" that we don't always need! But we must make it a priority to put down our checkbooks, to flee from our credit cards, and to spend our time and our money for the Savior!