Jeff & Jayleen CHarlot
We have created beliefs about money and, fortunately or unfortunately, they have shaped our circumstances. We hold the capacity, with the help of the Holy Spirit, to bring healing into our financial soul and all its avenues. But it’s just not focused on spending; it goes even deeper than that – saving, investing, giving, recreation, planning, and especially our experience with God’s generosity. In the book, Hicks writes on how to change our beliefs and goes deeper into some of these topics. Just a couple things that impacted us in the book were discussions of receiving, gratitude, generosity, forgiveness, and being a cheerful giver. Hicks writes that our difficulty with receiving is an outcome of our fallen state, right from Adam & Eve. We truly believe that we not worthy of good things. Both Jeff and I being givers, receiving was always a difficult task. With the help of God and through loving each other, we have learned that it goes so much deeper.
Walking in thankfulness goes beyond restoration to a transformation from within. Something Hicks says about this really is a truth bomb: he shares that until we have gratitude in our heart, we cannot respect what we possess, cannot cultivate what we have, cannot share our best, cannot have confidence, and cannot be ready for more. Gratitude is so much more than just saying thank you: it’s a posture of the heart. In the book, he gave this really cool analogy on forgiveness. Thinking of your financial distress as a wall. The door is love and the key to open that door is forgiveness, the kind of forgiveness that unfolds into grace, resilience, new life, and even gratitude. Forgiving each other and ourselves while moving forward after learning how to budget as a married couple was freeing. As we had love in our hearts towards each other, there was a wall that tumbled down: financial uncertainty. Looking back over this past year, we can say that we have come far with trusting ourselves with money. Another thing that Hicks does throughout the book that we love is give practical activations and powerful declarations. We haven’t had a chance to do this yet, but we are excited to see what it will come from it and are curious about how we would feel. For example, if you have a large amount of money in your wallet ($200) for a certain amount of time (one week) and you are to be aware of its presence, but don't spend it. How does it feel just having it there?
God originally intended for us to work out of the “knowledge of good” and the generosity He has let us experience. He will make us rich in every way so that we can be generous on every occasion. But it's not God’s goal to make us rich, it's for us to be generous. God loves a cheerful giver. Hicks wrote in the book that “cheerful” means something like this, "to sparkle cheerfully, like sunshine reflecting on a flowing river of prosperity." Being a cheerful giver is supposed to feel like that and even more.
We would say that the best quote of the book was: “The more willingness you invest, the more generous and expansive your outlook and feelings, the more you will notice, experience and even attract God’s willingness, generosity, and expansiveness. This is about you choosing your emotional state: specifically, thankfulness, celebration and joy. Rather than depending on other people, or circumstances, to shift in order to accommodate you and provide you with joy, you choose joy. Why wait for the rest of the world to get around to giving it to you?”