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The Holy Trinity of Finances

by: Tim Schuster

How managing your finances is about more than being practical, it’s also about understanding and acknowledging the emotional and spiritual side of money … the “financial trinity” if you will.


Money Is Practical
There is a rational and logical side to money. Money comes in. Money goes out. It adds up. Or it doesn’t. Whoever you are and whatever you do, your money comes down to simple dollars and cents on a piece of paper or computer screen. The main tool of the practical dimension of finances is a calculator. The upside of this dimension is that we can explain money clearly and concisely. The downside is that this represents only a one-dimensional view of finances.

Money Is Also Emotional
A calculator only tells you part of your financial story. We can draw dotted lines from our finances to just about every area of life: relationships, jobs, recreation, passions, entertainment and education. Mostly, we’ve found that our family of origin’s attitudes about money are particularly influential in shaping our relationship with finances today. If you’ve never had an emotional conversation about money, let’s chat over a large latte. You’re buying.  (By the way: the fact that money is emotional is not a negative thing! Emotions can be used to our advantage. For many people, this is the unexplored frontier of their financial lives and could quite possibly push them to new horizons of growth).

Money Is Spiritual
There is a reality to our lives that transcends checkbooks and emotions. These larger meanings involve putting our hands on meaningful work. We arrange materials in ways that give sustenance and beauty to others. We call it gardening. We arrange people to interact with ideas in ways that support personal growth. We call it teaching. We experience purpose when we put our time and energy into activities that benefit others. And what is money other than a manifestation of our time and energy?

What if we embraced a holistic and balanced relationship with money?
In other words, imagine an accountant, a therapist and a pastor get together to design a resource for someone who needs help financially. They each would have something unique and beautiful to say about one’s finances. But they need each other to offer something holistic.

We are learning at brightpeak that when we start the conversation with the emotional dimension of our finances, we’re far more empowered in the practical and spiritual dimensions of our finances. We don’t start goal setting and budgeting until we’ve tackled the emotional roots of our spending and saving.

To learn more about what we’ve developed as a result of these learnings and how you can play a role, visit www.brightpeakfinancial.com/betterhalves.

Tim Schuster is a New Business Development Associate at brightpeak financial and Founder of MIDTOWN, a missional faith community in south Minneapolis.

Brightpeak financial exists to help young Christians grow stronger financially so that they may live with confidence and generosity. It is a new division of Thrivent Financial, a faith-based, not-for-profit founded more than a century ago. Everything brightpeak does is aimed at helping families and communities thrive and become more resilient.