Household budgeting and financial management are important skills for young people to learn as they enter the working world.
Sadly, practical money management is rarely taught in schools. Across the globe, the result is often the same, young adults become trapped in debt. In the United States, credit card, car, and student loan debt are approaching record levels.
Thankfully, the Bible provides clear guidance on financial planning and how to wisely and faithfully steward God-given resources. Such knowledge is needed in the West as well as in the developing world. Consider the case of a young woman from Bolivia:
Gaby works as an office assistant and event planner with her local church in Southeastern Bolivia, an area where many families earn less than $2 per day. As a young woman in ministry, Gaby has struggled with managing her own salary and expenses.
"Like most young people, I managed my money very badly", she says. "The first days of the month I spent everything I had, and until the end of the month I had to borrow money."
As a result of her spending habits, Gaby became trapped in debt. "I wanted to change this situation, but I could not do it alone", she says.
At the invitation of friends, Gaby joined a small group of pastors from different churches who were part of a Five Talent program. In the group, Gaby learned biblical principles for financial management and planning. She also began to budget for her expenses and save and set aside funds each week.
"Since being in a savings group, I have developed a culture of savings and I always have an emergency fund in my monthly budget. I have grown in wisdom, because I have seen in the Bible the importance of managing money as a testimony of our Christianity."
Through her small group savings, Gaby has been able to get out of debt and meet her monthly financial needs. She's also saved enough to buy a small plot of land where she intends to build her own home in the future.
"My parents are proud of me because I have my land and I manage my money very well. They are no longer worried about me, and this makes me happy."
Gaby's financial situation has not only improved, but her outlook on life and ministry has also changed. Through her small group she has connected with pastors from a variety of churches and developed a bigger perspective on how she can serve her community.
"The vision of my life has changed, now I want to fully serve the pastors of different denominations. Now I have savings, and I have no problems with shortage of money."
Learn how you can help more women like Gaby escape poverty and debt and achieve financial freedom.