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God’s word has a lot to say about finances, in fact, there are more than 2,300 verses in the Bible on the topics of money and possessions!

God did not leave us alone to fight all the financial pressures and challenges we face without His wise guidance and trustworthy principles.

Please feel free to check Crown’s resource library of online tools,calculators and downloads.

Sick of Medical Debt

Chuck Bentley on 7/22/16 8:00 AM

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Originally posted at Christian Post July 22, 2016.

To learn Biblical answers to your financial questions, you can ask Chuck your questions by clicking here. Questions used may be lightly edited for length or clarity.

Dear Chuck,

My husband and I could really, really use some financial advice. We are both in our 20's, have a baby, and have been married for a little over 4 years. Unfortunately we've acquired quite a bit of debt, mostly from medical bills because I did not have insurance. But we do have some debt from other sources also. I was wondering if going through a Christian debt consolidation company would be a good way to go. I'm very overwhelmed and would appreciate any help. 

Sick of Medical Debt

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Baywatch Bummer – Lessons from Divorce Issues

Chuck Bentley on 7/15/16 9:00 AM

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Originally posted at Christian Post July 15, 2016.

To learn Biblical answers to your financial questions, you can ask Chuck your questions by clicking here. Questions used may be lightly edited for length or clarity.

 Dear Chuck,

I saw recently that the former Baywatch star David Hasselhoff headed to court to try and challenge the judicial order to pay his ex-wife $21K a month in alimony. I’ve read his assets went from $1.2 million in the bank to $600 after his divorce. What happened here, and how can I avoid this kind of financial fall?

Bummed for Baywatch Star.

Dear Bummed,

After decades of being known as “the most watched man on TV,” actor David Hasselhoff said in legal documents that his finances are a disaster, telling the court that his monthly expenses are $72,415 a month, including $21K in alimony to ex-wife Pamela Bach, and more than $18K a month going to support his two adult children who live with him. He’s asking the court for some relief, including an end to the alimony payments from the breakup of his marriage in 2006.

There is a lot for all of us to learn from this tragic story.

Famous, infamous, or unknown to the world, it is best to work to stay married because divorce is disastrous for everyone. And it’s been that way from the very beginning. In Matthew 19, the Bible records this exchange between Jesus and religious leaders of the day on the subject of marriage.

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Can You Recover from Mistakes At Work?

Chuck Bentley on 7/8/16 9:00 AM

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Originally posted at Christian Post July 08, 2016.

To learn Biblical answers to your financial questions, you can ask Chuck your questions by clicking here. Questions used may be lightly edited for length or clarity.

Dear Chuck, 

I’m embarrassed to say that I really messed up at work. I’m not sure what to do next, and I’m wondering how to win back the good will of my employer. Is it possible to resurrect a reputation at work? 

Weeping over Work

Dear Weeping, 

The answer is yes! You certainly can recover from terrible mistakes at work. In fact, it is an opportunity to improve not only your reputation, but also your overall work relationships. 

Rest assured, no one is perfect. Find me a person who has never made a mistake on the job, and I’ll show you a person who has never held a job. We are all vulnerable to errors and misjudgments. 

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Founding Fathers Advice on Debt

Chuck Bentley on 7/1/16 9:00 AM

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Originally posted at Christian Post June 24, 2016.

To learn Biblical answers to your financial questions, you can AskCrown by clicking here. Questions used may be lightly edited for length or clarity.

Dear Chuck, 

With the Fourth of July coming up, I’ve been thinking that the Founding Fathers would roll over in their graves if they knew the kind of debt America is in. Time magazine recently reported that “Most critics of the (national) debt cite the fact that at $19 trillion, the national debt represents about 102% of the U.S. gross domestic product, the sum total of all the economic activity in this country each year.” Consider me a critic! It’s amazing to me that our country can owe more than the economy makes. What advice would you have for Uncle Sam? Is America in financial trouble? 

Praying God will Bless America

Dear Praying, 

I saw that story in Time which noted that with the debt load the U.S. carries, it amounts to $42,998.12 owed per man, woman and child. I find that tragic and ridiculous considering the decreasing number of Americans in the workforce. Add this amount to every household budget in our country and we have a serious problem. The math for repayment simply does not work. 

The best piece of advice I can first offer you is found in your letter. We Christians – especially on America’s birthday – need to be praying for our country and for the election coming up. America needs God’s help for all the issues we face, and certainly a leader that can rein in the out of control federal spending should be among our prayer requests.  

When it comes to debt, it’s important to understand the tension between having some debt and balancing a budget. The country’s debt has been allowed to increase, in part, because the government can manipulate the currency, interest rates and a number of factors to force the math to look good… on paper. 

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Learning Lessons from Losing $4.5 Billion

Originally posted at Christian Post June 24, 2016.

To learn Biblical answers to your financial questions, you can AskCrown by clicking here. Questions used may be lightly edited for length or clarity.

Dear Chuck, 

I have been fascinated by the news stories about the embattled founder of the medical testing company Theranos, Elizabeth Holmes, who lost $4.5 billion – BILLION – and it is really hard to understand how someone can go from the top of Forbes richest people list to the bottom. Is there Biblical advice on how to avoid that kind of rise and fall? I have a business that I operate and I want to avoid that kind of disaster.

Working Hard for the Money

 

Dear Working, 

Thank you for the question. I’ve been fascinated by the story as well, which has all the drama of a Greek tragedy, and some lessons for those who want to create their own “unicorns” – an industry term for start up companies valued at over a billion dollars. Perhaps the whole tragedy could have been averted if a little more of Biblically recommended caution had been applied by those who first heard about the venture. 

As Christians we are urged to “be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.” (Matthew 10:16). Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes told the world that she has built a better medical mousetrap – claiming she could revolutionize the world of blood testing, which impacts many people. But according to pending lawsuits, words and deeds did not match up. Blind faith is never a good thing in investing.

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Does God Really Require Fathers to be the Breadwinner?

Chuck Bentley on 6/17/16 9:00 AM

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Originally posted at Christian Post June 17, 2016.

To learn Biblical answers to your financial questions, you can Ask Chuck your questions by clicking here. Questions used may be lightly edited for length or clarity.

Dear Chuck,

As we celebrate Father’s Day this weekend, it seems to me that today’s dads are under pressure of all kinds as well as having to endure being the butt of the joke too much of time. Father may not always know best, but Hollywood makes dads appear weak, stupid and clueless. What kind of leadership does God require of husbands and fathers? And does God require men to be the primary breadwinners, bringing home more than their wives? My wife and I both work, and I’m not sure how God sees that.

Duel Income Dad


Dear Dad,

Your question raises a common confusion: the distinction between leader and provider, and how God instructs men on both. God the Father – the image that we are given in scripture for the highest and best leader of all – provides us with a template for understanding what is expected of men … and what is not. In the Bible, God lays out a chain of command, which does not subjugate, but rather organizes how people work together, and at the foundation of the structure is sacrificial love by the leader who is held to the highest standard.

When it comes to organizing leadership, 1 Corinthians 11:3 puts it like this, “But I want you to realize that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.” In this outline, we see God detailing who is accountable for whom in relationship. God, out of love for the world, sent His Son to die for us. He made a plan to care for all of us. He asks the most of Himself. The husband is told to lay his life down for his wife and family as well, following God’s example. Accountability does not equal tyranny, but rather describes a sacrificial relationship.

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What Jesus Wants to See on Your Resume

Chuck Bentley on 6/10/16 9:00 AM

1 comments

Originally posted at Christian Post June 10, 2016.

To learn Biblical answers to your financial questions, you can Ask Chuck your questions by clicking here. Questions used may be lightly edited for length or clarity.

Dear Chuck,

For so many of us looking for work, the first step always seems to be to get a resume together. Do you have any tips for me on what makes a good resume and on any advice from the Bible for putting my best foot forward?

Writing a Resume … again.

Dear Writing,

With fewer good jobs available right now, a good resume can be the perfect advertisement for the amazing miracle of creation that is you. It’s easy to be discouraged and think that you are just one more resume in a pile. In Psalm 77, the discouraged writer ultimately remembers that he cries out to a God who can lead us with miracles and in new and mysterious ways … even on “a path through the sea.”

Start writing your resume with hope in the God who can lead you to the next great job for you, his dearly loved child, even if the journey leads you places you never expected to go.

There are many resume templates out there to choose from, so pick one that highlights what is wonderful about you. Forget the rules. Think about your unique skills.

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Is Graduating Debt-free from College Even Possible?

Chuck Bentley on 6/3/16 9:00 AM

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Originally posted at Christian Post June 3, 2016.

To learn Biblical answers to your financial questions, you can #AskChuck @AskCrown your questions by clicking here. Questions used may be lightly edited for length or clarity.

Dear Chuck,

My husband and I are more concerned everyday about how we are going to help our children get through college without burying themselves in debt. It’s starting to be similar to the costs of buying a house! What can we do to help our kids graduate with as little debt as possible?

Frugal Folks

Dear Frugal,

I share your concern! Forbes reports that the projected costs of a 4-year degree from an elite college can run as high as $334,000 … and that’s assuming the kids make it out in 4 years! Strategies exist for cutting those costs if you really work at it. Not long ago, my wife and I proudly watched one of our sons graduate from the University of Georgia – debt free. I’m not saying it’s easy, but it is possible.

As I wrote in this column last week, before you make an investment in a college education, take some steps to be sure that you are in a field of study that is suited to your unique and God-given design. Too many students increase the costs of their educations by switching their majors and adding years to their schooling. Borderzine.com reports, "About 80 percent of students in the United States end up changing their major at least once, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. On average, college students change their major at least three times over the course of their college career."

Time is money, when it comes to a degree. And time spent effectively in the high school years, can save thousands of dollars in college tuition fees.

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Make Your Expensive College Education Count!

Chuck Bentley on 5/27/16 9:00 AM

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Originally posted at Christian Post May 27, 2016.

To learn Biblical answers to your financial questions, you can #AskChuck @AskCrown your questions by clicking here. Questions used may be lightly edited for length or clarity.

 

Dear Chuck,

With kids in college, I’m very worried about whether they can get a job after graduation and about the debt they’re going to need to manage because my wife and I can’t afford to pay for their educations free and clear. But it’s hard to get a good job without a college education. Do you have advice for us on making the most of a college degree?

Worried Parents

 

Dear Parents,

With four sons, my wife and I can relate to your concerns as we have worked with our boys to get a college education without debt.  I’m especially concerned for today’s graduates because I believe that they are on the verge of suffering through another economic bubble poised to burst – a college debt bubble - just like the housing bubble that burst, leaving people stuck with homes worth less than the mortgage debt. Similarly, many graduates will owe more than they can afford to pay back because of low-paying or unavailable jobs. According to the Wall Street Journal, 2016 college graduates broke the debt record set in 2015, leaving college today with an average debt of $37,172.  With so many young people burdened as they start their adult lives, it’s important to make a plan that ensures their investment pays off.

Because the costs are so high, I believe parents and students need to seek lots of counsel before going into debt for a college education. Proverbs 15:22 notes, “Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.”

Know Yourself. We are all “fearfully and wonderfully made” by a loving God who intended us to accomplish His purposes on this earth. The question is, what is God’s purpose for our lives? Crown has developed Career Direct as an assessment tool to understand a person’s unique gifts and talents, because those are the skills best developed into a career. It’s important information to have as so many young adults get into additional debt because they’ve chosen the wrong majors for themselves, leading to higher costs and delays to discovering the right path.

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Let’s Give Them Something to Talk About

Originally posted at Christian Post May 20, 2016.

To learn Biblical answers to your financial questions, you can #AskChuck @AskCrown your questions by clicking here. Questions used may be lightly edited for length or clarity.

Dear Chuck,

My spouse and I find that talking about our finances is so stressful, we would rather just avoid the topic altogether. We sort of go our separate ways, but try to avoid things like debt, and we agree on tithing. But I wonder if we would be doing better as a couple if we could really talk about money. How can we tackle an uncomfortable topic?

Married and Mum on Money Talks

 

Dear Married,

You are certainly not alone as millions of couples find talking about their finances a very difficult and painful topic. But it is a topic that cannot be avoided. You’ve heard the phrase “talk is cheap,” but the truth is NOT talking about money decisions can be very expensive when you’re married and trying to live happily ever after.

In fact, a study from Kansas State University found that arguments about money were the best indicator of divorce – more than conflicts over child rearing, sex, in-laws or any traditional areas of tension. I believe that being on the same page with your spouse on financial issues is one of the keys to a strong marriage.

Harmonious communication is key because your financial future depends on working together toward mutual goals. Since we all bring different beliefs, methodologies and goals into our marriage, a helpful first step is to seek to understand where your spouse stands on these issues.

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