The Spiritual Aspects of Financial Planning – Part 2Posted on December 27th, 2012 under Wealth of Advice
By Francisco J. Colayco
This is to continue the article written by Arthur Ladaga, a member of the CFE Team.
The second spiritual aspect of financial planning is to make your money purpose-driven. Once you have self-mastery over your need of money, it should be clear why you need it. You may need it to buy a house for your family. You may need it to finance your children’s education. Or you may need it to give more to the less fortunate. Any attempt to a financial endeavor without a clear purpose for your money can be likened to blind spending!
Money with a clear and noble purpose can help achieve the ultimate end of human life. Humanity only has one particular calling: to live an authentic life in accordance with the divine will. You can find this at the beginning pages of the Bible:
“God created man in his image; in the divine image he created him; male and female he created them. God blessed them, saying: “Be fertile and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it. Have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, and all the living things that move on the earth.” (Gen. 1:27-28)
To “be fertile and multiply” not only implies an increase in physical number. Being created in the image and likeness of God, you are expected to live up to it. You must continuously develop yourself to live up to your first true calling. This is what it means to “be fertile and multiply!” When you do financial planning, you make your money help you become a well-rounded person in many aspects: financially, emotionally, spiritually, and others. The same expectation applies when you use your money to help the people around you, particularly your loved ones and your community.
The Impermanence and Giftedness of Money
Lastly, financial planning reminds you of money’s impermanence and giftedness. Like everything else in this world, money lasts temporarily. You cannot take it to the grave with you. It will eventually decay regardless of what kind of physical protection it has.
Nevertheless, money is also a gift. It may be a man-made invention used to purchase goods or services, but it is essential in daily living. People need it to buy their needs and wants. In addition, many people have difficulty earning money. The fact that you are able to obtain money legitimately (whether through active or passive income) makes you realize the importance of it in your life. You are given opportunities to earn and grow it so that you can utilize it better. This is the essence of money’s giftedness!
Saint Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits, gives a wonderful insight regarding the giftedness of all created things:
All the things in this world are gifts of God, presented to us so that we can know God more easily and make a return of love more readily. As a result, we appreciate and use all these gifts of God insofar as they help us develop as loving persons. But if any of these gifts become the center of our lives, they displace God and so hinder our growth toward our goal.
(Ignatian Spirituality Institute)
Financial planning helps you value your money in a proper way. Because money is not permanent, it’s important to know precisely how it should be used. It must never be treated as your god (Matt. 6:24)! At the same time, you become obligated to grow it. You are responsible to grow your God-given gifts (Matt. 25:14-30, Luke 19:12-28, NAB) to live authentically. Money, at its innermost essence, is God-given! You are given legitimate opportunities to earn and grow it. Having a feasible financial plan helps and keeps you responsible over your money!
To See With New Eyes
Planning is a vital aspect in any endeavor that you take. It is not just about making everything clear and specific. It also involves continuously reminding yourself of the most important aspects of life. This is what financial planning does. It may seem to be a dull and boring process, but the challenge is to look at it with new eyes! There’s much more to financial planning than what meets the eye. In knowing its spiritual aspects, you empower yourself further to reach your true wealth!
I hope your Christmas was full of happiness. Let me end this article with my fervent wish for a Joyful, Peaceful and Prosperous 2013!
End 2012 right by joining our Free Webinar sponsored by Pag-ibig on Dec. 29, Saturday from 6-8pm. Go to www.colaycofoundation.com for instructions.