Elder Robert D. Hales encourages us to stay out of debt and live frugally as he recounts a story from the early days of his marriage, when his wife exemplified the principles of provident living.
To provide providently, we must practice the principle of provident living, joyfully living within our means, being content with what we have, avoiding excessive debt, and diligently saving and preparing for rainy-day emergencies. May I share with you lessons in provident living that can help each of us?
When we were newly wedded, I was in the Air Force, and we had missed Christmas together. When I got home, I saw a beautiful dress in a store window and suggested to my wife that if she liked it, we would buy it. Mary went into the dressing room of the store.
After a moment, the sales clerk came out brushed by me, returned the dress to its place in the store window. I said, "What happened?" She replied, "It was a beautiful dress, but we can't afford it."
Whenever we want to experience or possess something that will impact us or our resources, we may want to ask our self is this benefit temporary, or will it have eternal value and significance. Truthfully answering these questions may help us avoid excessive debt and other addictive behavior.
When we are addicted, we seek those worldly possessions or physical pleasures that seem to entice us. But as a child of God, our deepest hunger and what we should be seeking for is what the Lord, alone, can provide-- His love, His sense of worth, His security, His confidence, His hope in the future.
I invite you to come unto Him and to hear His words when He said, "Wherefore, do not spend money for that which is of no worth, nor your labor for that which cannot satisfy." May each of us also overcome worldly temptation by coming unto Him and becoming provident providers, both temporally and spiritually, for ourselves and others is my humble prayer, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.