Money is emotive, handling money in business is a skill. Succeeding in business is all about how you handle money. Howard Dayton, the visionary behind Compass Finances God’s way, a successful entrepreneur and writer, compiled 2350 scriptures from the Bible that speak about money.
Wikipedia writes of how that discovery had a profound effect on his life. “God gave him a passion to share the life-changing principles.” God is concerned about how we handle money. He has ensured that we are adequately equipped in his word to handle money.
To succeed in business, you must learn the principles of handling money. Evangelist Rev. Billy Graham shared this timeless Biblical wisdom;
"If a person gets his attitude toward
money straight, it will help straighten
out almost every other area in his life."
Rev. Billy Graham, Evangelist
The five principles shared in this article are financial gemstones entrepreneurs have used through the ages and succeeded:
The Principle of Tithing and Giving
God wants us to honor him with our wealth He instituted the principle of paying tithes to help divorce us from the love of money. Jesus Christ our high priest receives our tithes and presents them before God. “Here mortal men receive tithes, but there he receives them, of whom it is witnessed that he lives.” Hebrew 7:8
Tithing and giving is a key that gives us access to the bounty of God’s storehouse. “Honor the Lord with your possessions, and with the first fruits of all your increase; So your barns will be filled with plenty, And your vats will overflow with new wine.” Proverbs 3:9-10
Giving liberally unlocks the doors of God’s favor in our lives. “Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.” Luke 6:38 NKJV
God commands his blessings upon our lives in the measure of our liberality to giving. “But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.” II Corinthians 9:6.
The Principle of Planning and Budgeting
Business is about planning. Before launching any business, you must develop a business plan. This plan becomes a road map for your business, it directs all your activities in the business.
Merriam Webster Dictionary defines a business plan as “a detailed plan setting out the objectives of a business, the strategy and tactics planned to achieve them, and the expected profits, usually over a period of three to ten years”
Business plans are heavy on financials, - how business money should be handled in order to realize the business’s objectives. According to tutor2U a business budget is;
“a financial plan for the future concerning the revenues and costs of a business. However, a budget is about much more than just financial numbers. ... Budgets for income/revenue and expenditure are prepared in advance and then compared with actual performance to establish any variances”
The Bible in Habakkuk 2:2 clarifies; “Then the Lord answered me and said: “Write the vision And make it plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it.” Have a clear, well written business plan that captures your business’ budget proposals.
The Principle of record keeping
Following closely on the heels of planning and budgeting is the principle of record keeping. All successful entrepreneurs have put into practice this principle. Properly kept business records are a reflection of the business’ health.
Record keeping should start with your very first transaction, and should faithfully record all your financial activities. Proverbs 27: 23 says, “Be diligent to know the state of your flocks, And attend to your herds” record keeping helps you to know the state of your business.
An added advantage to good record keeping, is that it will keep you on the right side of the Government. IRS on their website state the following benefits about good record keeping;
“Good records will help you do the following:”
- Monitor the progress of your business
- Prepare your financial statements
- Identify sources of your income
- Keep track of your deductible expenses
- Keep track of your basis in property
- Prepare your tax returns
- Support items reported on your tax returns
The Principle of avoiding debt
The principle of avoiding debts should not be confused with taking on investors. Business growth leverages on the power of OPM (Other People's Money) which is not the same as borrowing mindlessly to finance your business’ expenses.
Borrowing to keep yourself afloat is senseless. Piling up credit card debts, takes away your financial freedom. Proverbs 22:7 The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender.
To avoid getting into unnecessary debt, startup up entrepreneurs need to research and focus on a small group of early innovators that will help them develop a Minimum Viable Product (MVP). This helps keep launching costs low and will give your product or service’s a chance in the market.
Most businesses take on debt because they are in a rush to grow. Eric Ries Author of the Lean Startup shares this advice, “Reading is good, action is better.” “Don't be in a rush to get big. Be in a rush to have a great product.” “The goal of a lean startup is to learn what is valuable to the customer.
Romans 13:8 exhorts, “Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.”
The Principle of Saving
Successful Entrepreneurs track their cash flow. Knowing where your money comes from and how it is spent, will help you cut out unnecessary costs. A business that can keep costs down will build a cash reserve. A healthy cash reserve is the power behind rapid business growth.
Wise entrepreneurs are shrewd; they keep their eye on cash reserves. Proverbs 21:20 advises, “Precious treasure and oil stay in the home of the wise, but fools swallow them up.”
The famous Wealth Management expert, Suze Orsman shares the following advice on saving;
“Cash - in savings accounts, short-term CDs or money market deposits - is great for an emergency fund. But to fulfill a long-term investment goal like funding your retirement, consider buying stocks. The more distant your financial target, the longer inflation will gnaw at the purchasing power of your money.”
Everybody who learns how to handle money, by following these principles eventually succeeds.
Business success is a result of making correct decisions that move the business forward. In the second part of this article I will share more money handling principles from the Bible.