George Washington: Personal Finance Guru

George Washington: Personal Finance Guru May 18, 2011

Today’s post is a guest post from Jon at Free Money Wisdom, a blog dedicated to help you grow your hard earned money. If you’d like to guest post on Faith and Finance, send an email or leave a message on the contact page.

You know that thing called a dollar bill? Yes, the dollar bill that you use to buy pop and candy with. The dollar bill that you spend freely without a second thought. Well, take a good long hard look at the face on that dollar bill. You’ll see the face of a legend, George Washington. I bet some people reading this forget who he is! He was the first President of the United States. Most of you know about him from school, but what you weren’t taught is that he was a visionary in the area of personal finance. Although he never referenced the actual words “personal finance,” he did mention topics related to money, and how one’s character has an instrumental role on the success of your financial life.

“It is better to be alone than in bad company.”

Oh how this is true! George Washington knew this first hand. He had enemies knocking at his door constantly. He realized early on that if he let them in, his life was done for. This can be carried over into our personal finances. You are who you hang around. For example, if you are good friends with people who gamble, chances are you will be tempted to join them and dwindle your money away. I don’t care how confident you are, if you spend enough time with bad company, you will slowly erode away. Don’t let your finances go down the drain too.

“Let your heart feel for the afflictions and distress of everyone, and let your hand give in proportion to your purse.”

Wow, this rings so true for us Christians! I know this is something that I need to work on. I fall into the “you don’t work, you don’t get” mentality. But, according to God and his Word, this is the wrong mentality. As a Christian I’m called to provide for the needy and the homeless. It’s not our place to judge whether or not they deserve it. And it’s key to give without expecting anything in return. We should give out of the love from our hearts.

“Few men have virtue to withstand the highest bidder.”

This is especially relevant for any of you in the business world. Resist the urge to cheat your way to the top. There will be times when your moral character will be tested. Even if it means taking responsibility for something, no one ever got fired for telling the truth. The truth always wins. Don’t be fooled into thinking you can get away with deceitful behavior. Strive to be one of these “few men.”

“Bad seed is a robbery of the worst kind: for your pocket-book not only suffers by it, but your preparations are lost and a season passes away unimproved.”

Do you have bad seed in your life? Is this credit card debt that you keep putting off? Is it that large monthly car payment for a car you don’t really need? Did you buy too much house? Do you gamble on the weekends? The bad seed could be anything. For me, it’s eating out. I love eating out, I’ll be honest. But I have to attack this bad seed on a daily basis. Don’t let this bad seed grow. Replace it with good seed like investing wisely, packing your lunch, and avoiding all forms of debt.

George Washington has many words of wisdom. Personal finance is a topic that he indirectly spoke often about. He was a believer in the fundamentals. He preached long, strong roots stemming from good seed. Avoid financial traps and stay the course in your personal financial life. In the end, you will be thankful you did.

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