As recently as the mid-1980s, Americans were saving money at a 10 percent rate. That is, for every $100 they grossed, they would save $10. Do you know what the savings rate is these days? It’s around 0 percent. Yep, you heard me—0 percent. That sounds to me like the behavior of people who either think they have no future, think only about NOW, or who are simply assuming that someone else will take care of them when they are old.
The Bible does indeed warn us of the dangers of materialism. Money can easily become a god that people adore and trust. Loving money is indeed a root of all kinds of evil. That doesn’t mean, however, that poverty should be a life goal for Christians. God vigorously approves of the concept of building wealth for you and your family.
A few fortunate people build their retirement funds through a large inheritance or gift. The rest of us need to grow it bit by bit. It is a wonderful discipline to spend less than you make and save the difference. Here is Solomon’s advice: “He who gathers money little by little makes it grow” (Proverbs 13:11). Financial security means not only being able to pay your obligations and not be a burden on others. It also means that you can be generous to ministries and projects that you care about.
Start young. Time and compounding are your friends.