If you’re our guest this morning you should know that we are at the tail end of a “lengthy” sermon series entitled “Send Mile Stewardship.” Last week we started the series as we focused on the fact that we become WRONG ON THE MONEY when we love it to excess—when we idolize it—when our lives revolve around money and things.
This week we’re finishing up this series by looking at how we can CORRECT that WRONG attitude—how we can be RIGHT ON THE MONEY. And foundational to GETTING things right when it comes to our money is the understanding that we are NOT owners but rather stewards—not just of our money but of everything. Not us but GOD owns it all. As the psalmist says, “The Earth is the Lord’s and everything in it, the world and all who live in it.” So—everything we are—everything we have—it all belongs to God.
Well, as OWNER—God has RULES for us to follow when it comes to how we use our—HIS— money—and we’re going to look at those rules this morning. But before we do, let me stop and back up a bit to make sure you understand what I mean when I say God is the OWNER. The Bible teaches that when we open up our hearts and receive Jesus as Lord and Savior—when we say, “God, I give you my heart and my life.” Well, the Bible says He takes it—ALL of it. Yes—He takes our sins, our shortcomings, our guilt, our shame, and he deals with that. He takes our problems, our worries our cares, and He helps us with those things. But in this decision to follow Jesus we also ACKNOWLEDGE the fact that God is ALREADY the owner of our life, our talents, our future and all our material goods as well—our money, our investments, our house, cars, toys. When we put our faith in Jesus we are acknowledging that He is LORD of ALL.
In fact, let’s do a little “acknowledging” together right now. Answer these questions for me.
- Who gave you life? GOD
- Who designed your body—Who wove you together in your mother’s womb? GOD
- Who gave you your inborn talents and abilities? GOD
- Who gave you your mind? GOD
- Who loved you so much that He sent His only Son to give you the forgiveness for sin you could never deserve? GOD
- Who is even now preparing a home for you in eternity? GOD
Do you see a pattern here? Everything we have—everything we are belongs to GOD—for as James puts it, “Everything that is good and perfect is from GOD.”
I know this is counter to our culture’s mindset but none of us are self-made. Each of us are the child of a loving Heavenly father Who has given us everything we have and Who invites us to steward all that for His purposes in this world. And—as I said, since that is true—God has rules we must follow if we are to be RIGHT on the money—RIGHT on how we deal with all we have and all we are. This morning—relying on the writings of Bill Hybels—I want to distill God’s rules on stewardship down to ten Scripturally-based principles. We’ve put them in a nifty monopoly dollar-sized insert—so that you can carry them around in your wallet or purse as a reminder of how God wants us to handle the resources He gives us to steward.
Now—I don’t want to scare you but I’ve never preached a sermon with ten points before so hold on. Try to pay attention beyond the first three points!
Commandment number ONE – Thou shalt WORK HARD.
The Bible often refers to money as “the fruit of one’s labor.” And this is very significant. You see, generally speaking—not always but generally—the harder and the smarter we work, the greater the fruit of our labor, the greater the financial reward.
I mention this in the context of a message on money management because once a person understands the nobility of human labor and engages in it enthusiastically—usually a steady or even growing income stream is the result. In other words WORK gives us something to manage. Work gives us financial income. If you think, “Why is Mark bringing this up?” Well, I’m doing so because I think there is a whole generation of young people growing up in our country with a less than adequate appreciation for the nobility of labor. This often results in a LESS than adequate stream of income for these young adults, which creates all kinds of unhealthy dependencies and problems in families and society in general.
I don’t want to step on too many toes but I think our college system exacerbates this problem because students aren’t taught that we get an education in order to be trained to make a living.
The fact is we study those four years—so we can work. We don’t just get an education to be enlightened—we get one so we can get a job—one that is in line with God’s calling. I mean, college isn’t just a four year vacation out from under mom and dad’s watchful eyes. It’s supposed to prepare us to WORK so we can generate income.
Sadly, in my opinion, many colleges seem to discourage this. Students live in apartments—but they never write a rent or a utility check because it’s included in tuition—that mom and dad pay.
Things like this create a dream world for many of our young adults that is not at all like reality. One day four years later they graduate and reality hits—and many of them are not ready. They either don’t want to work—or don’t know the things they need to get a good job. That’s not good because in God’s wisdom, there is always a direct connect between working hard and receiving financial remuneration. In God’s mind, the two are inseparably linked.
I’m saying work is a GOOD thing. When I was a kid I worked. I had a paper route. I delivered 50 papers after school every day and 150 ever Sunday before church. I had to go to each of those customers and collect their payment for all those newspapers. I learned to budget my income so as to have enough to pay my newspaper supplier. I learned I had to save to buy what I wanted. I also learned that the more customers I got and the better job I did of collecting—the more money I had to spend. I’m not saying I delivered papers uphill both ways in a snow storm—I’m not patting myself on the back—I’m just saying that work is good for us. It’s an important part of life in the real world. This is why I list this as the first commandment. If we’re going to help each other and our children get better at overall money management, the whole deal starts with creating growing levels of income by working and working very hard.
And doing our best at our labors—is part of our acknowledging that God is our boss—that it is He Who gave us our talents and abilities to work. So as Paul puts it in Colossians 3:23: “Whatever you do WORK at it with ALL YOUR HEART, as working for the LORD.”
Commandment number TWO – ESTABLISH A FINANCIAL PLAN with the income your work generates that includes GIVING and SAVING.
Sadly most people don’t have a financial plan—and this causes a problem because they just spend their money as fast as they make it.
Northwestern Mutual sponsors an annual study of Americans and how they handle their money and their most recent research confirms this fact. It shows that half of all Americans have no financial plan whatsoever in place—and that only 16 percent are “highly disciplined” financial planners, meaning they know their goals, have a plan in place to meet them, and rarely deviate Larry Burkett put it this way, “Nine out of every ten people with an income are financial failures. Americans clearly lack financial literacy skills.”
Listen, people don’t drift into good money management. In fact they drift into the opposite: carelessness, overspending, materialism and greed. You have to have a plan—a budget that monitors your spending and plans for saving, investing, and giving.
To illustrate the importance of this let me ask a question—and I must warn you it’s a bit personal. Did you shower this morning? I don’t know how you’re answering that question but I do know the person next to you is hoping your answer is, “Yes.” In fact, right now they may be doing a little “nasal investigation.” Here’s some more “watery questions.” Did you do the dishes after you had breakfast? Did you do any laundry recently? Well sure—we all use water for that stuff—showering, dishes, etc. Let me tell you how all that was made possible. When your house was being designed, an architect found out just where the city water supply pipe was going to enter your house; then he or a plumbing consultant said, “We’re going to take this incoming stream of water, and we’re going to route it several different places throughout the house. We’ll route some to the shower, some to the kitchen sink, some to the washing machine.” A plumbing plan was put together so that when the water stream was turned on, it flowed to useful places around the house—instead of just pouring into your crawlspaces and soaking into the ground. Friends, you ask any financial expert you can find, “What is the Achilles heel of personal money management?” They’ll all answer in unison—the establishment and sticking to a PLAN—the thoughtful routing of your income stream to useful places instead of allowing your earning stream to spill all over the financial landscape and get soaked up—so that before you know it it’s all gone who knows where. We need a financial plan to be good stewards of the material possessions God has entrusted us with.
Okay, here’s a very basic one that I like. First, make it your plan to give ten percent of your income to God. In other words PLAN to TITHE. Now I know how uncomfortable the “T” word makes many people feel but listen to me for a moment. When we honor God with our tithes—He promises to bless us—to provide for us—and no one blesses—no one provides BETTER than God. I will testify that for 36 years now Sue and I have been giving God at least a tenth. It’s the first check I write every payday—and God has blessed us. He’s taken care of us—in ways ONLY God can. We have a home. Our kids are all educated. We have reliable cars—closets full of clothes—a cupboard and fridge full of food. We’ve taken annual vacations. In short, our OWNER, has taken WONDERFUL care of us—and tithing has opened the door to all that. As a further motivation for you to try this TITHE part of the plan I’m borrowing a story from Hybels’ new book, Simplify. Imagine two friends—let’s call them Mike and Jim. They are both Christians but Mike has a little more faith in the area of finances and God’s promise to provide.
Jim—not so much. One day Jim says, “Hey listen Mike. I’ve got to get from A to B financially and it’s going to require 100 percent of my earnings to do so. It’s simple math. These calculations work. For me to pay the mortgage, the utilities, the grocery bill, the car payment, and save for retirement etc.—for me to get from A to B will require 100% of what I earn.” Mike on the other hand listens to God’s Word and what it says about this and replies, “Well, Jim, I need to get from A to B too. But I believe God can take me from A to B on just 90% of my earnings. I’m going to give 10- percent as I’ve been instructed in Scriptures—like Malachi 3:10 where God says,
‘Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house. Test Me in this, and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of Heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.’
I believe the Bible so I’m going to set aside a tenth as a tithe to support the purposes of God. I believe that, as a reward for my faith and obedience, God will take me not only from A to B, but from B to C as well. I’m saying I believe that as He promises in His Word, God will pour out ‘C’ blessings until they are overflowing and I want to take Him up on it.”
Well, this new place, “C,” isn’t even on Jim’s radar. He’s doing the simple math and his road map—his financial plan—ends at B.
Friends, I have heard TONS of “C stories” from Christians like Mike—people in this church like him—stories of answered prayer, God’s protection—new opportunities to do exciting things—things of eternal significance, stories of unexpected blessing coming their way. The people who share these “C stories” say there is nothing like obeying God in this.
And, here’s the interesting thing about Mike and Jim. Both think the other guy is an IDIOT. Jim looks at Mike’s 90% plan and says, “Are you kidding me? Really? You think you’re going to get from A to B on just 90%? Can’t be done! Simple math. Don’t be an idiot.” Mike looks at Jim and says—a little bit more KINDLY perhaps—“No offense man, but you’re the idiot because the most you can every hope to accomplish is to move yourself from A to B. Big deal! BORING! That’s what every average person is signed up for. On your 100 percent plan you’ll get from A to B just like I will—but you’ll never get to experience the joy of the journey from B to C. You will never know the feeling of God’s supernatural activity in your financial life. You will never experience the sense of being favored and blessed by the OWNER! You will never get to the privilege of seeing what God might do in your life beyond point B. The real living happens there—between B and C. And pardon the pun, Jim, but that’s where the money is.”
I guess the question that comes to my mind is this: “Which IDIOT do YOU want to be?” I would challenge you to be the “Mike kind of idiot” or as the Bible refers to this kind of person—be a HILARIOUS giver! Trust God and give Him—give His church the first 10th. If that percentage scares you, start at a lesser percentage and as God blesses you increase to a 10th and beyond! Experience the abundant joy of going from B to C! If you do—God will bless you and not just by providing for your needs—but He’ll give you the faith to give to other ministries like Kairos or Cathie Burke or the Crisis Pregnancy Center, etc. You’ll be financially sound enough to adopt children. You’ll have more and more opportunities to join God in His work. There’s no joy like the joy that comes from inviting God into your finances—trusting Him to do as He promises and provide for your needs.
Now—I know I’ve been called “a stickler” when it comes to tithing—and I am—but I’m a stickler because this is God’s command. THE OWNER is a STICKLER on this one. And He is because He knows the blessing that awaits us if we obey Him in this.
The second part of this financial plan I’m advocating is to put another 10% away into savings and investment. Build that to equal about six months of living expenses—and then beyond that into an investment fund that will build consistently for the future. The sad fact is MOST Americans DON’T save. This week I read that 85% of Americans will reach the age of retirement with less than $250 in savings. After working 30, 40, 50 years, people will go into retirement with only Social Security, and 85 percent will have less than $250 in the bank.
Well, to help motivate you not to end up that way, let me give you a picture of the potential benefit from this 10% SAVINGS deal. Let’s say a family with an income of $40,000 (not much in our county but it will prove my point). Let’s say that family had taken 10 percent of each pay period and invested it with an 8 percent average rate of return over 30 years. Do you know how much they’d have in their little investment fund? $498, 215.95. That’s the miracle of compound interest. This is on earnings never exceeding $40,000, no windfalls, no special lottery winnings or anything, and they would have had the 80 percent for all the rest of their family expenses. I know that may seem a little high rate of return these days—but it’s also a very low income for our area so it gives you a good idea of the potential benefit. God talks about this in Proverbs 6:6-8 where He says, “Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It has no commander, no overseer or ruler—yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest.” Even bugs are smart enough to save for the future! So—learn to live on 80% of your income. Give 10% to God and save 10% for the future. Do this and you will be amazed at how this kind of financial plan frees up your spirit and lowers stress, gets you going in the right direction. Every one of you can do this, and you can do it starting today.
Commandment #3 – Avoid DEBT like a plague.
You see, as miraculous as compound interest is on the POSITIVE side of the equation—if you ever get on the NEGATIVE side of compound interest, you’re looking at a modern day nightmare. Today over 80% of Americans live that nightmare because they OWE more than they OWN. The average American carries 7 credit cards, which explains why 56% of marriages end in divorce because of arguments over money and debt. Debt is a horrible thing. I mean, no wonder it causes arguments. It can keep us from buying a home or sending our kids to college. It can make us afraid to answer the phone. J. Rubin Clark puts it this way, “Once you’re in debt, interest will be your companion every minute of the day or night and it’s working against you. It has no love, no sympathy. It is as hard and soul-less as a granite cliff, and you cannot dismiss it. Whenever you get in its way or you cross its course or fail to meet its demand, it crushes you.” To show you what I mean let’s say you have a credit card debt of $7,500 (which is average per household today) and you decide to pay it off by paying the minimum monthly payment. Let’s say the interest rate is 18%—which is common these days. Your minimum payment will be about $150 a month—2% of the balance. If you were not to charge another cent to that card and make the minimum payment it would take 30 years to pay it off. And in those three decades you would have paid out $23,000. Scary isn’t it?!
Once you get overwhelmed by debt, it feels like a noose around your neck, and someone is pulling hard on the other end of the rope. With the exception of responsible loans for appreciating items, like maybe a home mortgage and a reliable car—we should all obey this commandment to avoid debt like the plague.
If it helps, remember what Jesus did for you on the cross. When he took your sin and erased that slate of charges against you, he set you free spiritually. You were meant for FREEDOM. Christ purchased your freedom. So don’t enslave yourself to debt once Christ has made you free. Don’t let your spiritual freedom get overshadowed by the bondage of financial indebtedness. Fight to KEEP your freedom! Don’t give it back to the bondage of indebtedness.
And if you’re in debt—don’t despair—you can get out. Make a plan. Cut up those cards. Pay more than the minimum. Get a low interest consolidation loan—borrow from a family member—whatever. But fight your way out of debt and stay out!
Commandment #4 Learn to distinguish between WANTS and NEEDS.
When you yearn for something—be it the latest smart phone or a grande mocha latte at Starbucks ask yourself, “Do I NEED that or do I just WANT it?” We have to be brutal with this because satisfying unrealistic WANTS can destroy our financial plan. It can make us WASTE the resources God has blessed us with. If a WANT takes money from what you need to give to God to be obedient—if it takes from what you need to save or what you need to take care of your family then walk away. Be satisfied with your current phone. Instead of that latte get a sip from the water fountain. Learn to distinguish between WANTS and NEEDS.
I’ll talk more about this later—but the truth is we deprive our children of a special caliber of joy when we always give them what they WANT. When—in order to get the parental—or the grand parental—thrill of seeing a smile on their little faces—we get them whatever they want whenever they want it—we hurt them in the long run. You see, it’s a good thing to want—and work to save to satisfy that want. It makes us appreciate things more. Plus giving the latest do dad to our kids stifles their imagination. Some of the best fun I had as a kid was creating my own toys—indoor forts out of bed sheets—or outdoor forts in trees.
Commandment #5 – Determine when enough is enough.
In other words, learn to be content. As Paul told young Timothy, “But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. That will be ENOUGH.” (1st Timothy 6:6).
John Rosemond, a funny nationally syndicated columnist—and also a family psychologist—likes to take unusual informal POLLS of parents. Whenever he’s in a foreign culture, he’ll ask parents, “Do your kids complain about boredom?” Without exception he’s always been told “NO” outside of this country. In fact, parents in other cultures look at him with incredulity, as if to say: Boredom and kids just don’t go together! Rosemond also likes to question parents in the U.S. who raised their kids in the forties and fifties. He asks: “When you were raising your kids back then, did you hear them complain about boredom?” The typical response: “Rarely.” In another of his little surveys, Rosemond asks middle-aged parents, “How many toys did you have growing up?” The answers range from zero to ten, but mostly these folks respond with something like, “Toys? We took a cardboard box, and we made something out of it.” In contrast, Rosemond says the typical American child of five years of age has accumulated 250 toys!
Now, since five-year-olds have only lived for 260 weeks, they’re apparently accumulating almost one toy per week. No wonder they’re bored! No wonder toy storage is a booming industry!
And children aren’t the only ones with this problem. We adults are constantly accumulating our own expensive “toys”—things our culture SAYS we have to have. Here’s a personal example. I used to always get the most expensive razor—you know the one with five blades, shock absorbers, and a swiveling head like on a Dyson vacuum cleaner? I even had one that vibrated to make the whiskers stand up so as to be sliced away closer. I bought these razors and their expensive blades because I thought I needed them to be content with my shaving. Well, I have since learned that the cheapos work just as well. I even got one of those old safety razors for Christmas and learned that ONE blade is more than enough to do the job.
So where does contentment come from? Does it come from having more toys–from going to more movies—from eating out more often—from enlarging our wardrobes—from escape of any kind? No, contentment comes from within. It’s a lesson we can and must learn. As Paul said, “I have learned whatever state I am in to be content.” Enough really is ENOUGH.
Commandment #6 – Don’t get involved in GET RICH schemes.
When I was in college one Friday night several of us from the BSU went out to a local carnival. As we walked through the midway heading for the roller coaster one guy called us over to his booth and talked us into playing a game of chance. He said it was easy to win; he would roll special wooden dice and each roll would earn us points according to a special score card—and all you needed were 100 points to win a brand new color TV! It even had this new invention called a “remote control!” At first we were hesitant. We knew it was wrong to gamble, but the guy in the booth said, it wasn’t really gambling. He even gave us the first roll free and it scored us 75 points! We couldn’t believe our luck so we paid him $3 to roll again. This got us up to 85 points so we gave him another three bucks. This time we lost a few points but his shrewd talking convinced us to try again. Well, we kept giving him money for additional rolls and our points would go up almost to 100 but the next roll would somehow push our total back down. To make a long story short, we ended up losing $42 to this guy before we realized we were being duped—and when I was in college that was more like $420! As I walked away I noticed that the grand prize he had promised us, the “brand new color TV” he had on display, was covered with dust. It had been sitting in his booth a long time! Apparently this con man was the only winner at his game of chance.
Get rich schemes like gambling and the lottery and day-trading—never pay off. Remember, the Bible says acquiring wealth should always be directly connected to working hard because as you work hard over a long period of time, you develop intelligence. You need to develop character and discernment so that if you acquire wealth, you have the accompanying character to be able to handle the accumulating wealth. Those RARE people who DO get rich quick tend not to have that accompanying character to know how to handle it. I’m sure you’ve heard the stories about people who win the lottery and three years afterwards their lives are in shambles—because they didn’t have the character necessary to manage the windfall. As Proverbs 28:22 says, “A foolish man is eager to get rich quick, and is unaware that poverty awaits him.”
Commandment #7 – Don’t compete with the Joneses.
This one is based on the final commandment in God’s BIG TEN which says, “Thou shalt not covet anything that is thy neighbor’s.” If you remember Roger Price’s excellent message on that command you know that coveting is looking at your neighbor’s stuff—and instead of simply appreciating it or being happy for him or her because they have it, it’s saying to yourself instead, “I’ve got to get me one of those. Whatever else somebody has, I want.”
And we are all guilty of this covetous sin—this sin of comparison. We see that others have big houses—we think we need one. Others drive SUV’s—we think we need one. We compare and base our financial decisions on that comparison—that competition. I know you’re tired of “Mark’s treadmill sob stories” but here comes one more. A couple months back my treadmill died—AGAIN. It was no longer covered by warranty and I learned that to repair it would cost $800 so I joined Planet Fitness. It’s only $10 a month—and there are no expiring warranties to worry about. So five days a week I drive over there and use THEIR treadmills—and other than not being able to choose what to watch on TV and the commute time—it’s going pretty good.
But running NEXT to others leads to comparison. You feel like you have to literally KEEP UP with the Jones in order not to look weak. This would make you feel foolish. I confess the other day I stole a quick glance at my neighbor to see the speed setting on his treadmill. I was pleased to see he was running slower than me—and not as far—but that glance caused me to lose my footing and I looked very foolish as I tried to get my feet back under me without falling.
Well, keeping up with our neighbors when it comes to their possessions can make us look just as foolish in that it can destroy our financial plan—so don’t do it! Stay on your plan regardless of what others do.
Commandment #8 – Don’t make financial decisions without getting wise counsel.
Proverbs 11:14 says, “In the abundance of counselors there is much wisdom.” This principle is vitally important when it comes to money. I mean, this is why we have a stewardship committee that we stock with experience CPAS—people who know about money. Financial wisdom is important when it comes to putting together a church spending plan—and the same is true of our individual spending plans. Last year I realized that I was rapidly approaching 60 years of age—and I thought, “I should change my retirement plan to more fixed—safe—investments. I should change the percentage from 60/40 to 50/50. So I called Guidestone—and had them change my plan.”
Then, I mentioned it to Bill Jones and Hugh Faulconer—two people who have a LOT of wisdom when it comes to money. They both looked shocked and said, “Mark—that was not a good thing to do. Your percentage was correct.” Bill added that he is retired and still keeps his investments in that percentage of risk. I changed it back—but I would have been wise to go to them BEFORE making that decision. Many people ruin their plan because they don’t seek wisdom—they don’t humble themselves and ask the advice of others. DON’T BE THAT FOOLISH.
Commandment #9 – Don’t corrupt your kids with money.
Bobby is always talking about Deuteronomy 6 that tells the importance of parents teaching their children God’s loving laws—well that includes His laws about money. I mean, too many parents are handing out money to their kids without instruction or accountability as to how that money ought to be managed or spent. Parents are neglecting to have sit-down conversations with their kids in which they spell out the whole Biblical value system that should undergird all financial decision making. Plus, parents are sometimes modeling terrible financial values — modeling credit card abuse, debt accumulation, inattention to tithing, Be careful in this moms and dads.
Strive to set a good example! It takes discernment and courage to connect money with responsibility and work, to require record keeping, to explain the importance and the value of establishing and sticking to a plan. It takes a lot of parental octane to impress those values on children, but it’s worth it. It will bless them—plus it will bless you because they’ll be the ones paying to take care of you when you’re old!
Commandment #10 – Thou shalt not orient your whole life around money.
Jesus was asked one time, “What is life really about? Tell us what the core of the core is. What should we be focusing on?” Remember Jesus’ answer? He said, “At the core of the core, do these two things: Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. Come into a relationship with God, one that’s filled with love and peace, security and warmth, guidance.” Then He said, “And love people.”
Now—as a pastor I’ve often had the unforgettable experience of watching people die. I’ve talked with people who knew their days on this earth were coming to an end. Do you know what’s true about everyone I’ve ever seen who faced death? They are consumed with two concerns. They want to make sure they have two things straight, and they correspond with what Jesus said the core of life is about. The first concern is that they’re rightly related to God because they know they’re going to the next world. They know they’re just a few gasps of air away from what’s on the other side. You know what else? People want to be surrounded by family and friends.
They don’t talk net worth. They don’t talk about bank balances. No—they talk about God, and they talk about family and friends. People on their deathbeds understand the real game of life is not just about acquiring and spending money. It’s about coming into a relationship with God. It’s about knowing and loving some people deeply.
Well, do you have to wait until your deathbed to figure this out? You shouldn’t! As Matthew Henry put it, “It ought to be the business of every day to prepare for the last day.” So—can you do some learning right here and right now and say, “You know what? No more. I am not going to orient my whole life—I’m not going to alienate my spouse and my children—I’m not going to alienate my family and friends from me—because my whole life is centered upon acquiring and spending more amounts of money. I’m not going to do that. I’m going to understand at this stage of my life—that what makes a life rich is a life of one who’s rightly related to a loving God. And I’m going to start right now focusing on family and friends and enjoying people and loving people.” If you set your life up that way, you’ll get to the end of your life and you’ll be on your hospital bed a couple breaths away from the other side, and you’ll have no fear and no regrets.
Well, those are the ten. What I would like to ask you to do is review these with your spouse or friends or sit down as a family and say, “Which ones are we doing really good with, and which ones do we need a little work on?”