There once was a man who lived like a miser. He worked diligently all of his life in order to save up his money. His wife had strict allowances on what she could or could not spend. By the time he approached his death, he had set aside a small fortune by most people’s standards. His wife thought she just might get to spend some of it upon his passing. But, no, the husband requested that she put all of his money in his casket with him when he was buried.
Being the dutiful wife she had always been, she agreed to do just that.
When the funeral was about to come to a close, she walked up to the casket and placed a small envelope just under his hand. She kissed his forehead and said, “There you go, my love.”
The pastor standing nearby had been made aware of her promise but wondered as to the wisdom of letting so much money get buried in a casket. He turned to her and whispered as she began to walk away, encouraging her to reconsider her decision. But rather than relent, the dutiful wife simply said,
“Pastor, I cannot go back on my promise to my husband.”
Then, as she proceeded to walk away, she turned to the pastor, smiled and said, “I wrote him a check.”
Ah, money and marriage. You may not be surprised to hear that regular fights about finances is one of the top predictors of whether or not a marriage will end up in divorce. A recent study by TD Bank found that over 60% of all couples felt that the other spouse overspent. Money and marriage can be a source of strain for couples whether they earn a lot or a little by the world’s standards. Decisions on what to spend and when can literally suck the air of affection right out the windows of any home.
What’s more, hardly any married couples earn a similar or equal income. Due to various differences such as stages in life, degrees or tenure of employment, spouses will often find a disparity between what one or the other earns. If one or both spouses feel that they can leverage their income over the other because they earn more or feel that their work is more challenging, arguments will be underwritten by resentment regarding spending.
It isn’t until couples recognize the reality that as a couple it is not “your money” or “my money” but rather “our money” that they will be on their way to financial freedom as well as the freedom in their relationship to focus on other things beyond finances. This principle is rooted in the Scripture Genesis 2:24. In addition to that, the "our money" concept fleshes out the spiritual truths found in Ephesians 5:25-33.