Here are some practical suggestions to help break the cycle of enslavement and the bad use of money:
First of all, reflect. Do take time and ask yourself about your money. What do you spend it on? What don’t you spend it on? As an example, many people, without blinking an eye, will drop fifty bucks per person for dinner and drinks at a nice restaurant, and five bucks, if that, into the collection basket on Sunday. Reflect. What do you spend your money on and, most of all, what does it say about you and your priorities? What does it teach your children? How much trivial “stuff” do you need to buy? Remember, life is a stewardship. We ultimately don’t own anything and must let go of everything. We only have it in our keeping for a while; then, we must give an account of our stewardship.
Second, as a family, consider tithing. Give a certain percent of your income away to charity and or the church. This is definitely Biblical and corresponds to the Old Testament and the teachings of Christ in the New Testament. Plus it is easier to work out a family budget if you can plan your giving ahead of time.
Third, have a “charity bin or can” which occupies a prominent-and active-place in your home. When you or the kids go shopping, through the change into the can. When the can is full, donate the money to your chosen charity organization or project.
Fourth, take your family to visit a charitable organization, homeless shelter, soup kitchen or the like. Perhaps you can even volunteer to work at such a place on a regular basis. But do drop in and see the work they do; let your privileged children come face to face with Jesus in the homeless, hungry, and deprived.
Fifth, adopt a family charity which all members can contribute to on a regular basis.
Finally, have a family meeting on how each member might limit consumption and learn to enjoy what each has, instead of always wanting more.
Remember that the rich young ruler (Luke 18:18-27) turned away from Jesus because he had many possessions, too many to see who was really standing before him. Wouldn’t that be an awful thing to have happen to us? That we use our money to consume things and not to bring us closer to our neighbour and so in turning away from our neighbour, the people in need, discover that we have in fact turned away from the Source of all gifts?