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The 3-D Budget

MoneyWise / Rob West and Steve Moore
The Truth Network Radio
March 6, 2023 7:03 pm

The 3-D Budget

MoneyWise / Rob West and Steve Moore

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March 6, 2023 7:03 pm

When you’re following a budget it can seem somewhat constraining, so you may forget that you still have choices and flexibility. On today's Faith & Finance Live, Rob West will be joined by John Putnam who will explain about the “3-D Budget” and how it can help you take a fresh look at your spending plan. Then Rob will answer your questions on various financial topics. 

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asked if he'd like dinner, a budget airline passenger asked, what are my choices?

The attendant responded yes or no. Hi, I'm Rob West. When you're on a budget, you may forget that you still have choices and flexibility. Today, John Putnam joins us to talk about the 3D budget and how it can help you get your priorities straight. Then it's on to your calls at 800-525-7000.

That's 800-525-7000. This is Faith and Finance Live, biblical wisdom for your financial decisions. Well, it's always a treat to have my friend John Putnam back on the program. He's a certified financial planner, a certified kingdom advisor and founder of Smarter Stewardship, a marketplace ministry. And John, we're delighted to have you back.

Rob, always good to be with you. Hey, I came across your 3D budget recently. It's a free resource that you're offering at And I really wanted to share this with listeners as a fresh new look at their spending plan.

I think it's really important. Tell me why you created it. Rob, so often with budgets, I've just been doing this for so long. People sit down with their budgets and it's just a long list of income and expenses, just a long list of sort of two dimensional numbers, dollars in and dollars out. And what I wanted to do was create something that would give the people a tool that would provide more perspective on their budgets that they're not getting, just looking at dollars in and dollars out.

I love it. So what specifically is offered here that gives someone better control over their money? Well, the first piece you need to understand is that all expenses are not created equally. So when we look at all of our expenses on a budget, we need to understand that everyone has a different weight about them. And what it does is really allows you to refresh your goals. It helps you understand what your outflows are, what are flexible, what are not, where could you increase cash flow.

And it creates a unique perspective that you can not only use yourself, but it makes it easier to communicate your budget with your spouse or an advisor. Great. Well, folks can download it at smarter and take a look at it themselves. But give us the nuts and bolts of the 3D budget.

I'll give it to you pretty promptly. It's pretty straightforward. So if you can imagine your regular budget is just a line of income coming in, expenses going out, and you want your expenses to be less than the dollars coming in.

We all know that. But what I wanted to do here was to take each of these expenses and then create three columns. These are the three dimensions. Column one is what you have to pay. This is anything that is contractual in nature or required like your rent or your mortgage or a credit card. Column two is what you need to pay. These are needed, but they're a little flexible. Think about how where you get your Internet service from or cable or dry cleaning possibly. And then finally, you've got the third column, which is what you want to pay.

These are 100% optional. They could go to zero at any given time, and it wouldn't affect your basic living expenses. And by creating these three columns, you can take each expense out of your budget and say, okay, is this something I have to pay, something that I need to pay where I've got a little flexibility or something that I want to pay? And that last column, what I want to pay is really important, especially times where we're thinking about like this upcoming recession or we may be in it. We talked about this a while back, Rob, is that if you need to capture immediate cash flow, this want to pay column, you can take it to zero, and it doesn't affect anything financially in the work that you're doing on a month-to-month basis. I love it, Jon. It's a simple change, but it could really give you a unique perspective into your budget perhaps that you haven't had previously.

Just 30 seconds left. How does this help you prioritize your actions? Rob, the simplest way to say it is it adds perspective that you don't have in just looking at a column of numbers.

It gives you three different looks at your differing expenses, and it gives you different approaches to deal with each one in an impactful way. Yeah, some of them really immediate, like the want to. Others are going to take a little bit longer, but it helps you look at it in a way where you can take some action. Jon, thanks for stopping by, my friend. Always great to be with you.

Always good to be with you, too. That's Jon Putnam, founder of Smarter Stewardship. You can download a copy of your 3D budget at It's on the resources page, again, All right, your calls are next, 800-525-7000.

That's 800-525-7000. We'll be right back. Delighted to have you with us today on Faith and Finance Live here on Moody Radio. I'm Rob West. We're taking your calls and questions now on anything financial. I know how it works. Over the weekend, there's some things you've been wrestling with financially, and you're wondering what to do, and you want to take some action, but perhaps you'd like a sounding board so we can talk about it together.

Well, we're here for you. Or if you want to share a testimony, perhaps you've been applying the principles we talk about here on this program to your financial life, and you've seen them bear out the way God intended them to. Well, that's because biblical wisdom is always right. It's always relevant.

It's never going to change, but you could be an encouragement as you share that testimony of God's faithfulness in your life. If either of those apply, we'd love to hear from you with some lines open. 800-525-7000. That's 800-525-7000. By the way, we began today by talking about budgets, specifically the 3D budget. If you'd like to download that, it's available free of charge at That's the website of our good friend John Putnam. Just click on Free Resource Library, and when you create a free account, you'll be able to download it, which will give you perhaps a different look at your budget through the lens of have to, need to, and want to.

Here's what that's going to do for you. When things get tight, perhaps an income adjustment occurs. Maybe you've had a reduction in pay, or maybe just because of inflation, things are tighter than they've ever been. Well, perhaps that will allow you to quickly eliminate some things from the want to category that will free up cash flow that will allow you to meet the budget for your other obligations.

So check that out today against By the way, as we talk about this area of lifestyle, it really is a key to being able to experience financial success. You know, spending less than you earn is critical, and Proverbs is clear about that. Proverbs 10 says, the slack hand causes poverty, but the hand of the diligent makes rich. The key is, as God provides for us, what are we doing to rein in our spending so that our lifestyle doesn't become a barrier to contentment and long-term financial security? You see, we'll never be able to save, give, pay off debt, or reach our financial goals without living within our income. And if we're spending more than we make, well, nothing in our financial lives will work.

So we've got to get on a budget, we've got to make sure that it totals no more than 100%, and we've got to have margin so that we can accomplish our longer term goals and objectives. Well, if you've struggled to stay on budget, you'd like a plan that works for you, perhaps this is a great time for you to check out the FaithFi app. You can download it in your app store. Just search for FaithFi. That's FaithFI, Faith and Finance.

Download it today. You'll find three different systems for managing your spending plan. A hands-off approach where it's just more directional in nature, your transactions will download automatically, and you'll be able to see kind of at a high level as it's categorized into different categories how you're doing, how is your spending going, and is anything perhaps out of line so that you can make some adjustments. All the way to our digital envelope system, which is the most hands-on approach where you can literally have digital envelopes for every budget category. You'll fund those envelopes out of every paycheck. This is just happening in the app, not actually moving money. But then as your transactions come down automatically from your credit cards and your debit card, your bank account, they'll automatically categorize in each of those digital envelopes so you can see at any point during the month exactly what's left.

And here's the key. This is why Larry Burkett was so fond of the envelope system. It allows you to make changes in real time so you don't get to the end of the month and say, how did we do? Well, we really messed up this month.

No, we can make course corrections along the way. So if we run out of money in the eating out category, well, we're going to find things in the cupboard that have been there for perhaps a month or two that are some canned goods and we're going to make do. If the clothing money has run out, we're going to stop spending.

If the gift money has run out, maybe we're pushing that into next month. That allows you that real time information to stay on budget. So check it out today. If you want to learn more, you can also head to our website,

Just click on the app tab and let us know how it works for you. All right, let's head to the phones. We've got just a few lines open and we're going to dive in. Eight hundred five two five seven thousand is the number to call.

Let's go to Orlando. Hi, Eric. Thanks for calling. Go right ahead.

Hey, good afternoon. So I went and purchased a new vehicle with the co-signing help of my earthly dad. And I was really trying to avoid it. Like, I mean, I searched for cars for a long time and I just couldn't find something that could fit me. So I went ahead to Chevy and I got this new vehicle right now.

All right. The the percentage rate, the the the interest rate is super high. It was in like 20 percent. And I'm I'm really I'm really regretting getting this car. And I kind of sort of rushed into the decision. This is my very first car for me, for me a lot. I had been used to always buying in cash. So my question to you is.

Versus. Me taking it back and taking that credit hit and probably harming me and my dad's credit. Do you know if there's any possible options for me, like maybe even if there is to trade it in and pay the difference to get a different truck, like, you know, just to try to avoid that whole thing.

Yeah. You know, there's not really any specific cooling off period for buying a new car in the state of Florida. So I think your best option is really to go back to that dealer. How long has it been, Eric?

It's only been about three weeks. OK. Yeah. I'd go back to that dealer and just say, listen, we're less than 30 days in. I have discovered that, you know, in hindsight, as much as I love this vehicle, it just doesn't work for me financially.

And I'd love to know what you can do for me. And I'm willing to buy another car from you, perhaps from their used car lot. And, you know, maybe they'd be willing to work with you, even if the contract doesn't allow for it specifically. There wasn't any kind of.

Have you reviewed the contract to see if there's any kind of language that gives you a period of time where you can basically terminate the contract? Usually it's, you know, only a matter of a couple of days, if any. Yeah, I did see something about the cooling off thing, but it really is a saying that it really doesn't allow it, like you said. Yeah.

Yeah. So I think the key is just to appeal to their desire to keep you as a happy customer. This is undoubtedly something that has occurred, you know, with others, because this is not uncommon for folks to have buyers remorse as they get in and feel like, man, this is the car for me.

I just need to make this happen. And then credit comes back and they say, yeah, we can put you in this vehicle today and, you know, and all of a sudden, next thing you know, you've got a vehicle and then reality sets in and you're like, wait a minute, this is not going to help me accomplish my financial goals and objectives. So I think, you know, appealing to their desire to keep you as a happy customer and helping you get into another vehicle, I think is about the best option that you have because you don't have any legal recourse to cancel the contract and make it null and void. Obviously, if they could come out whole and get you into another vehicle and then be able to turn around and sell this, perhaps, you know, at a slightly lower amount, you know, everybody might win in that case. So I think that's going to be your better option. Apart from that, you'd have to sell it as a private sale and hope you could get as much out as you bought it for. And then you could take the proceeds, pay off the loan and turn around and buy something else that's a little more affordable.

So I think those are your two options. I'd probably start with the dealer and see if they're willing to work with you. If not, start investigating what other vehicles with the same mileage and make and model are going for through, you know, CarMax or any of the others, AutoTrader, and see if you might have an option to sell this directly. Even though you may take a little hit, at least you're not going to damage your credit and, you know, just turn this in, which is going to cause it to be sold at the auction. And then you're going to have a pretty significant deficiency between the balance you owe and the amount they get for it.

You'd be much better off if they won't work with you selling it on your own and hopefully only take a hit of a few hundred dollars. Let us know how it turns out, Eric, and we'll be right back on Faith and Finance Live. Stay with us. You know, one of the things I've found over the years and counted in hundreds of families is that our spending will always rise to our level of income unless we protest to the contrary. And so we need to start by praying. Ask God to help us define the right lifestyle for us. And then once we define enough, we can create a spending plan and ultimately a system to control that, which doesn't exceed 100%, but also allows for margin to accomplish our longer term goals and objectives, which are based on not our cues from the world, but ultimately really what our values are, our priorities as a believer, where God is leading us and our monthly expression of that is our monthly spending plan. Well, if we can help you with that, you can download the FaithFi app on our website at

Just click the app button. All right. Let's head back to the phones for your questions on any financial topic. Eight hundred five to five, seven thousand. Let's head to DeKalb, Illinois.

Hi, Frank. Go ahead, sir. Yes. I had a question about retirement. I will retire in October and I have two months left till the end of the year and I want to work. Now, my question is, do I get the year to year for the extra money that I can make without getting penalized or does it go from calendar year to calendar year?

Yeah. In that first year, Frank, there's an exception to the Social Security earnings limit in the as to the cap on the amount of money you can make from work without your benefits being reduced. And it essentially is one twelfth of the annual limit. So in this year, 2023, if you are not at full retirement age, that cap is twenty one thousand two hundred and forty dollars.

So it would be one twelfth of that or seventeen hundred and seventy dollars that you can earn up to that amount. And if you go over 1770 in any month, that's when they would start to hit you for that reduction of one dollar for every two dollars above the limit. And it would continue one twelfth of that limit until that calendar year expires. And then obviously the following year you'd be subject to the limit based on the total earnings for the year. Now, in the year you turn full retirement age, as you probably know, it's less stringent. It jumps up to fifty six thousand five hundred and twenty and one twelfth of that would be also applied in that particular year.

Four thousand seven hundred and ten dollars. But it is for that first year only based on a monthly limit. Does that make sense?

Yes. So if I retire in October, I can make thirty four hundred dollars more approximately. And then the next year, because I won't be sixty seven, I'll be sixty five. And then I can make the twenty one thousand with without going over twenty one thousand four hundred twenty three.

I'm good. Correct. Yeah.

Twenty one thousand two hundred and forty. Yes, that's correct for the next year. And that will likely change in twenty twenty four. But here's the one other reality. And you may be familiar with this, Frank.

But when that reduction occurs, if it does, if you go over the limit either on a monthly basis in the first year or over the twelve months in the second year, once you reach full retirement age, they will pay that back to you in the form of a higher check until you're completely refunded. So it's just a temporary reduction. OK, yes, I understand that. OK, that may have a lot. Great. Thank you for calling, Frank. God bless you, my friend. This is Faith and Finance Live taking your calls and questions today.

Eight hundred five, two, five, seven thousand. Let's head to Tampa. Petra, thank you for calling. Go ahead.

Hi. Yes, I was just wondering, I wanted to retire, but my financial guy saying not yet. And I don't want it also security yet. So I have eight hundred thousand in my retirement account. And I was wondering when would be a advisable time to go ahead and be able to retire. Yeah.

Well, it's all going to come down to what your monthly income need is. I assume you're going to try to delay Social Security to let that check continue to build. Is that right? Yes. Yes. So sixty five at least.

OK, great. Yeah, I would advise you doing that. And the longer you can wait, the higher you lock in that benefit amount by about eight percent a year, which will be a reduction prior to full retirement age. You'll actually increase it by eight percent a year or one twelfth of eight percent every month up to 70 beyond full retirement age.

But it's really going to come down to what your monthly need is. Have you put together a retirement budget, Petra, just to get a sense of what your monthly expenses will look like? I understand your house is almost paid off. So let's say you're entering retirement with basically debt free and perhaps with some other expenses.

What we find is most folks live on about 70 to 80 percent of their pre-retirement income just because they're no longer saving for retirement. You know, the kids are off the payroll. We're out of debt. We're dropping our life insurance.

You know, those kinds of things. Do you know what that monthly amount is you're going to need? It would be under 4000, maybe 3500 if I could really reduce that low, but about 4000 to be comfortable.

Yeah. So I think the only challenges and this may be what your adviser is getting at is, you know, we would typically apply a rule of thumb as a four percent withdrawal rate. You know, that was established based on some research done by a guy named Bengan years ago. And it's still true today, although some folks would say you probably need to do a little less. Others might say you can go as high as four and a half or even five percent. But let's say we stick with four percent a year withdrawal rate from the 800,000, which means that if it's invested very conservatively but with a small allocation to stocks and fixed income type investments, you should be able to maintain the principal balance over time, not in any given month or year. But over time, you should be able to sustain that four percent withdrawal rate and not see the balance decline. That would throw off 32,000 a year, which is only 2600 a month. So you're going to need to push it up a bit higher than that to come up with 4000, which I realize is temporary just to get you to Social Security. But you're probably going to eat into the principal. So I think the longer you can wait to start that, let it you know, continue to grow, hopefully continue to save and get closer to that retirement date where you'd also have Social Security. You're going to be in a better spot.

Does that make sense? So if I did a part time job and only say to 2500 a month, that would be. I would feel pretty good about that. Yeah, because that would keep you at a four percent withdrawal rate. And that would just be for those three years or so where you are waiting until Social Security kicks in if you're planning at sixty five.

So I think that would be the key. Let's try to keep it to no more than twenty five hundred dollars a month and then work with your adviser on the right investment mix to stay very conservative, but to generate the income you need to sustain it. Thanks for your call. We'll be right back on Faith and Finance live. Here's our hope and prayer on this program each day that we'd be an encouragement to you as you think about your role as a steward in managing God's money, applying the wisdom from the Bible, the timeless wisdom from God's word so you can make decisions with confidence and peace of mind, understanding that ultimately it's about surrender, complete surrender of our lives, including God's money to him so that we can then put everything under his lordship and be found faithful in managing his resources. The steward, who's effective, understands the heart of the master because you can't manage the master's money without understanding what's on his heart.

So that's why we go back to God's word to pull out the principles so we can apply to our financial decisions and choices. I'm Rob West. We're so delighted you're along with us today on Faith and Finance live. We're taking your calls and questions at 800-525-7000. That's 800-525-7000. Also coming up in our next segment, Bob Dole will stop by with his weekly market commentary, tell us what he's looking at here as we start a new week as we evaluate the markets and the economy.

That's coming up in just a bit. All right, let's head back to the phones to Bowling Brook, Indiana. Hi, John. Thanks for calling, sir.

Go ahead. Hi, this is John Cummings. Great to have you with us, John.

Thank you for having me. I was calling to hope to get maybe some simple tips on how I get more involved in budgeting in our house. My wife's the nerd and handles all the budgeting. You mean that in the most loving way, right?

I do, I do. I'm just honest and— Well God has wired us all differently, that's for sure. And I think the key is I like the idea, John, of there being one bookkeeper, if you will, in your household. Certainly I'll maybe describe that person just slightly different and say it's the person who's a little more detail-oriented, perhaps doesn't mind working on a spreadsheet every now and then or, in the case of our FaithFi app, doesn't mind using a smartphone but maybe enjoys the process of kind of working through the numbers and making sure everything balances. And usually opposites attract, right? So if that's the case for one spouse, oftentimes the other is completely the opposite. Maybe they're not as detail-oriented. Maybe they would rather just kind of know at a higher level, how are we doing this month?

But I don't want to get into all those numbers. And that's okay, because God puts us together to complete us, not to frustrate us as two become one. So I think the key is, even though she's the bookkeeper, there needs to be a time, John, where you and she come together to really talk about, number one, where are we going? What are we ultimately trying to accomplish with God's money? What's important to us? You know, as believers, what are our values?

And what do we want to do in the area of giving? How much is enough for our lifestyle? How much do we want to be saving for the future? You know, all of those issues, because then the budget becomes really the roadmap to get you there. And the reason we make short-term sacrifices to rein in our spending is because we want margin to be able to accomplish those longer-term goals and objectives that really are aligned with our values and priorities as Christians. And then maybe there's one person, like your wife, that's managing the day-to-day, paying the bills, making sure everything's on time, monitoring the envelopes if you use the envelope system.

But then I think what might be helpful for you is, in addition to that goal-setting time, maybe annually, or if not annually, perhaps it's as much as semi-annually, you're coming together monthly for what I call a money date, where you're looking at the budget that she's been managing all month, and you all together are making course corrections. So that might be as simple as, hey, we've run out of money in our eating out envelope this month, so what are we going to do to get creative to get to the next month before we replenish that particular fund? Hey, we're out of money in our gift-giving category. Perhaps we need to bake something for the neighbor down the street who's, you know, celebrating, you know, a special event instead of giving a gift like we normally would.

I mean, these are the kinds of things that in your money date you can do, so we're not trying to make you a bookkeeper. We just want to open lines of communication so you guys are on the same page. Does that make sense, John? Makes good sense.

Yeah. So I think there's two takeaways for you. Number one is, I think there should be a time annually where you all come together to do some longer-term planning, praying first, asking God to really show you where He's leading you, talking about your values, what you want to be known for as a family and as a couple, and then allowing the budget to be a reflection of that on a monthly basis. And then two, that money date where you come together not to finger point, well, why did you spend that and why did you do this? It's really about how can we come together to look at where we're at for the month and talk about what changes do we need to make this month, and then what's coming up next month that we might want to anticipate. And having that monthly communication rhythm I think will really be a game changer. Also, you may want to consider the FaithFi app where, you know, if she's managing the money and paying the bills, with the FaithFi app you would be able to have a look into each spending category every month using the digital envelope system and see what's left in each category, which even though you may not want to be the one in all the details and pushing the buttons, you could still know exactly where you all stand every month as you're getting that set up. So let's do this.

You stay on the line, we'll get your information, I'll make sure you get a six-month pro subscription to the FaithFi app, perhaps see if she'd be willing to use that for the next six months just to maybe take a different approach to managing your money and that might allow you to have a better look into what's going on throughout the course of the month. John, stay on the line, we'll get your information and thanks for calling today, sir. God bless you. To Florida, hey Jim, thanks for calling. Go right ahead.

Yes, sir. I'm calling in regards to a kind of a sad story but it's going to happen. We're going to be inheriting probably up to two and a half million dollars plus and so we're kind of questioning, we don't like thinking about it, we know it's going to happen but we have to kind of have a certain plan ready for it. I want to be a philanthropist, my wife wants to be frugal, it's just kind of like what does life look like when that happens?

What do I have? Can I give money away? Should I give money away? Does taxes get involved? It's something that I don't want to think about to the last minute but it's silly if I didn't.

Yeah. Well, I can certainly understand that, Jim, but here's the reality. This money doesn't have to be a burden.

I mean, I realize anytime an inheritance is involved, there obviously is a triggering event, usually involves the death of a loved one and so we don't ever like that but in terms of you now being the steward of these resources, it doesn't have to be a burden in your life. I think the key is to go into it, number one, with the right heart posture to recognize, listen, we're fully surrendered to God and his purposes and we count this a high calling to be a money manager for the King of Kings and I think the key is to go into it, as you said, not allowing it to change your lifestyle because you've prayerfully decided how your lifestyle should be oriented and that's ultimately between you and your wife and the Lord and just because you have this surplus now doesn't mean you have to change that. Number two, your idea, you mentioned being a philanthropist, I think being generous is clearly on the heart of God and so perhaps this is a time to get more strategic in your giving, not only looking at just, you know, where are we going to write our checks this month or this year but being a little bit more intentional to say, you know, if we were to look at the biblical model of Judea, Samaria and to the ends of the earth, maybe it's in your community, in our country and then internationally and you align that with the heart of God and the scriptures around the ministry of God's word, preaching, teaching and discipleship, the ministry of God's mercy, widows and orphans and the ministry of God's justice, perhaps the oppressed and you begin to look more strategically at your giving. I think the other thing is to really seek some wise counsel because a certified kingdom advisor, a godly advisor that could journey alongside you to help you put a wise investment strategy in place and be really smart and efficient with your giving to minimize taxes and to expand your giving opportunities could be a great resource and they'll likely avail themselves of the services of the National Christian Foundation along the way. So my next step would be to find a CKA there in Florida, just go to and click find a CKA.

Stay on the line, I've got to take a quick break but we'll talk more off the air, we'll be right back. For where your treasure is there, your heart will be also, you know that's a key idea in managing money God's way. Our heart follows our money, so where we're invested, where we're spending, our heart's going to go along with that and the question is, what does our spending say about what's most important to us? Thanks for joining us today on Faith and Finance Live, I'm Rob West.

Just before the break we were talking to our friend Jim in Florida, he's preparing he and his wife to receive perhaps an inheritance of greater than two and a half million dollars and they're just wondering, how do they approach that? It's not something they're necessarily asking for and they're pretty content with where they're at right now and just wanting to be faithful stewards of that and Jim as I was sharing this clearly doesn't have to be a burden in the sense that you go into it with the right heart posture, seeking the Lord, holding it with an open hand, not changing your lifestyle and looking to be very, very generous and obviously seeking some wise counsel, but give me your thoughts on that and perhaps anything else you're thinking about. Well I'm hearing some folks on the radio and my heart goes out to them and you think, oh boy, I'd sure like to help them and I listen to this radio station quite a bit, I'd like to help them and I know definitely my church is going to get helped. I know where a lot of the monies are going to go and I don't really need a lot to survive in my later years, I mean I've already established a pretty good retirement fund, but I see myself being more just giving, you get that heartfelt giving that goes along with this and the folks that call in that are having rough times and all that, I just do things like that.

I do it right now, but of course things are getting a little more crazier and I'm going to feel, I don't know, I just hope that nothing changes, I hope that the world doesn't take the greed and change us is what I'm worried about. Well I appreciate that and I think the key is going into it knowing that that's a possibility and realizing that we see clearly in Scripture if something's going to derail us from having God in first position in our lives, it's most often going to be money and the things that money can buy. You remember when Jesus was explaining to the disciples in Mark 4 in the parable of the sower what prevented the word from bearing a 30, 60, 100 fold return, he said it was the deceitfulness of riches and the desires for other things, the cares of this world, and so staying rooted in God's word and surrounding yourself with a community of other people who have a vision for generosity and are connected to giving opportunities, being open to the leading of the Lord with the people on your path, I think will be really helpful. I also recommend an organization to you that has been immensely helpful to me over the years and that's one called Generous Giving. You'll find them on the web, just Google Generous Giving and there's a couple of things that I think would be helpful for you from them, you and your wife to go through what they call a jog, which is a 24-hour journey of generosity and really just will open your eyes in a community of about a small group of 10 to 12 over a 24-hour period in a destination setting, just really the heart of God for generosity. You'll be challenged by some great teaching, but just the rich discussion that follows among people who are thinking about these same things I think will really challenge you. And then every year, it's coming up in April, they do what they call the Celebration of Generosity, which is a wonderful gathering, a conference of a thousand people or more that really are all there just to grow in their learning and understanding around generous giving. And you might want to check out the Celebration of Generosity, but I think if you go into it this way and you've got some good wise counsel alongside of you, an advisor who's not going to discourage the giving, but a certified kingdom advisor who will actually celebrate that and help you to be intentional with your giving, I think this can be something that just accelerates that desire you already have in your heart to be connected to God's activity through your generosity, perhaps in a way that you haven't been able to do previously because you didn't have the resources in quite the same way you will moving forward. So I'm actually excited for you as long as you continue with this heart posture that you have now.

Does that make sense? A hundred percent, and I'll probably be reaching out to you more often. All right, we'd love for you to do that, Jim. God bless you, my friend.

And be sure to check in with us along the way and check out on the web. God bless you. Before we go back to the phones, our good friend Bob Doll is here, and Bob, did you have a chance to hear that last caller?

I sure did. What a great conversation. Yeah, you know, I mean, what are your thoughts on that? I mean, obviously you've interacted with a lot of folks with a lot of wealth over the years, managing literally billions of dollars, and, you know, a lot of folks go into this, especially in a sudden wealth situation, thinking, uh-oh, what if this changes everything? What if I get swept up in perhaps the greed that can often follow?

What's been your experience on a way to guard yourself against that? I think just being aware of the possibility, as you said to the caller, is you're halfway home, recognizing this could be a temptation. Look, the desire for money is not all bad. That's what you do with it, and money is a tool, not the end in itself. And I think if people, as this guy did, decides up front before the check shows that I'm going to have this kind of attitude, I think he's going to do good stuff with that money. Yeah, I have no doubt about that as well.

I appreciate that. Bob Doll with us today, Chief Investment Officer at Crossmark Global Investments. He joins us each Monday with his Doll's deliberations from his weekly investment commentary. By the way, you can sign up for it.

I count on it each week at Well, Bob, we've talked, seems an unending way about inflation, so perhaps we'll skip that for the moment. But just look at so many of these cross-currents that are going on economically right now, starting with the job market, fascinating to see what's going on there, and the strength that we still see, even in the midst of these challenging times.

It's amazing. It's the one big part of our economy that's befuddled the Fed as other things are bouncing along okay, some things like housing because of interest rates are weakening, but the job market has remained incredibly strong. There's still almost two jobs available for every American who's looking for one. That is, that's as strong as it ever gets, much less if we're contemplating a potential recession.

Yeah, no doubt about that. Bob, you mentioned the housing market. Are folks thinking we could see not only just a leveling off, but a meaningful decline in housing prices this year? Many are, and that would be consistent with a big bump in a short amount of time in interest rates, and in particular mortgage rates. Now if we have a recession, the housing price decline will be aggravated if we end up not having a recession, it's just a dip. Activity levels, as you know, Rob, have fallen off as people are just waiting and seeing as opposed to a year ago when people were outbidding the next guy and every house went for more than the asking price.

Seems like forever ago, but that was a big phenomenon. Yeah, no doubt about that. What about businesses in this environment, Bob? You had a comment just about production and in the midst of the falling demand. Yeah, businesses come in various forms in this sort of environment, meaning the economy is slowing and some are feeling that and others it's, you know, dam the torpedoes and keep on moving ahead. But our guess is as businesses become more cautious because they're seeing demand fall off, a lot of businesses have trouble with inventory, some of the retailers too much inventory piling up, so cutting production is probably in our future. We've seen some already, probably more coming and then it becomes sort of a chicken and egg as to whether that leads to recession or not.

Yeah, no doubt about that. And then Bob, finally, one of those crosscurrents is on the global front and that is China finally reopening. What does that mean just to the global growth outlook?

Well, it's good news. I mean, China, not that many weeks ago, was basically shut down because of COVID and that zero tolerance policy, a stymied lots of businesses and the ability for China to export as much as they typically do. Now those shackles have come off and we're seeing some consumption that's been stalled, it's now coming back, it is lifting global growth in a pretty significant way.

What will be interesting to watch, like when the U.S. opened up, it's not a straight line, it's a very bumpy process and I think we'll see that again for China, but that gives non-U.S. activity coupled with the good news from the Lord in terms of a mild winter in Europe, that gives non-U.S. economic growth another leg. Yeah, interesting. All right, Bob, so in summary, things are going to continue to be choppy for the foreseeable future, huh?

That's right. Today is a perfect example. This Monday, stocks, the futures before the opening were down, then they took off and the markets were up a lot and now they've given it almost all back.

It's a crazy world we live in. Yeah, especially if you're the one having to make the buy and sell decisions, so we'll be praying for you, my friend. Just buy low, sell high, that's all you need to know, buy low, sell high. I'll remember that. Hey, God bless you, Bob, thanks for stopping by.

Thank you. Talk soon. Buy low, sell high.

That's the key when it comes to investing. All right, let's round out the program today to Miami, Florida. Hi, Pauline. How can I help you?

Oh, looks like we lost Pauline and so no problem. Sorry, we'll try to get you back if we can, but folks, in summary, we've covered a lot of ground today. I think we started off by talking about spending plans and budgets and whenever we do that, that's where the rubber meets the road, right, because it all starts with our spending. You know, with the money that flows through our hands—Bob Doll was just talking about our economy—well, you know, there's probably, for most of us, very little we can do to affect the larger economy, but what we can control is our own economy. And we want to make sure that we have the opportunity to manage God's money in a way that's faithful, but realizing that our money management tells a story about what's most important to us, I think we need to often take a step back and just say, if this spending that I'm doing is an allocation of my priorities, really what's most important to me and where I place my trust, then perhaps this is a time where I need to be making some changes and really looking at what God has called me to here in my financial life. And so maybe we can all do that today as we look at what God has entrusted to us and use it very, very wisely. Well, let me say thanks to my team today. I'm so thankful for Amy Rios and grateful for Dan Anderson and Jim Henry as well. Thank you for being here.

Faith in Finance Live is a partnership between Moody Radio and FaithFi. Hope you have a great rest of your day and come back and join us tomorrow. We'll see you then. We'll see you next time.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-06 20:30:04 / 2023-03-06 20:47:37 / 18

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