So many people were blindsided by COVID-19 which makes it all the more important to have an emergency fund for any future crisis. I first heard about this concept from motivational coach and finance guru, Chinkee Tan. In two months people grew anxious and agitated especially when the quarantine was extended three times because their funds were depleted. If they had an emergency fund, it would have spared them of this most urgent concern.
I’ve heard Sir Chinkee stress the importance of an emergency fund a few times already. He advocates that everyone should have a goal of at least six months of their basic salary saved so that in times like these, we would have something to lean on to.
Here is the most important part. As we save money for the future, we should not neglect giving back to God and His work.
Of course, if you are a believer in Christ, you should have faith that He will supply all your needs. As God is surely in control, we should also be ready for any untoward situation. There is nothing wrong or sinful about being prepared. It is not just about COVID-19. What if you lose your job? Or if a fire or a calamity destroys your home? Can you deal with that? Ecclesiastes chapter 3 warns us, “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven…” The bottom line is that there will be good and bad times so we need to be ready.
START SAVING SMALL BUT START IT NOW.
When I first heard about having an emergency fund, I was doubtful if I can save for it with my salary and the kind of lifestyle that my family has. It was a good thing that my father raised me to be diligent in saving money. My wife and I decided that we will take steps to save even if we start small.
We started with my bank account where my salary is deposited. We tried not to touch what was left there after taking out all the expenses. When our company offered to enroll us in a group plan from a reputable finance company where part of our salary is automatically deducted and saved in an account where it earns a bigger interest, I hesitantly joined. I now thank God that I did. Last year, I also started a plan with the same finance company which gave me life insurance and an investment plan so that whatever money I save there will earn more. So slowly we are getting to that goal of having an emergency fund good for six months.
TEACH YOUR CHILDREN TO SAVE
We also needed to teach this principle to our children. With proper urging, my eldest son started saving his money from his salary. We want him to understand the value of saving for a rainy day. We pray that he keeps it up and does not fall into any temptation that would seduce him to use his savings to buy items that he wants but not need.
GIVE BACK TO GOD
Here is the most important part. As we save money for the future, we should not neglect giving back to God and His work. My father trained me early regarding this having been raised in a Seventh Day Adventist home. When I went to church, my father would trust me to bring our tithe. To this day, my family is committed to keep giving back to God what is His. It is an important aspect of our faith.
To sum it up, strive hard to have an emergency fund. We cannot control the future, it is in God’s hands, but we need to be prepared. It does not mean we do not have faith, were are just ready.