When we learn and understand how to manage we are empowered and not making decisions out of fear. God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love and self discipline. (2 Timothy 1:7)

Today’s harsh economy creates an urgent need to provide our daughters with the tools to be financially savvy. Did you know 49% of adults and 94% of students surveyed do not understand basic money concepts and less than half of high school seniors qualify as being financially literate?

Financial literacy includes understanding of relationships among money, work, investments, credit bill payment, retirement planning, taxes and so forth. Also included is the ability to use knowledge and skills to manage financial resources effectively for a life-time of financial well-being.

Our culture has created a ‘taboo’ about discussing money with family and friends. People get very uncomfortable when a question is asked or the subject of money is brought up. Less than 10% of high school seniors receive any financial education is school. We must make educating our children about financial concepts a priority.

One financial concept our children do not comprehend is the understanding of delayed gratification. Kids want it now and do not even think about working for it. Delayed gratification could be taught beginning at the age of two. When your sweet child is sitting in the cart while you are shopping, just smile when she screams – and know you are teaching her delayed gratification. Continue enforcing this concept throughout childhood. Do not make the mistake of being tempted to undermine your teaching by allowing your child to “pay you back later”. This allows them to get comfortable with borrowing and debt. Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it. (Proverbs 22:6)

A few concepts to pass onto your daughters to guide them on the road to financial success would include:

  • Understanding the differences between needs and wants
  • Develop good spending habits
  • Understanding living within your means
  • Tithing

Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works and generous to those in need, always being ready to share with others. (1Timothy 6:18)

Now is the time to have financial discussions with your daughters. Liberate your daughters from ever saying “I did not know. I was never taught.” Young women, you can create financial freedom for your selves. Common sense and strength belong to me. Insight and strength are mine. (Proverbs 8:14). Mothers, your strength in teaching and enforcing financial concepts in your daughters will empower them to be responsible for themselves.

Do you know where you are headed financially? Pray that God will give you the desire to be a good steward.

by Shari Larson, BSN, RN
Primerica Senior Rep