Category Archives: Pew Business

Davis: How to stop living from paycheck to paycheck

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To avoid living paycheck to paycheck, set a budget.

By Ahmad Davis
Special to Inside The Pew

According to the Wall Street Journal, 70 percent of people in North America live paycheck to paycheck. There are a few great timeless pieces of knowledge to avoid living To avoid living paycheck to paycheck, set a budget.this way.

1. Set clear written goals

According to Proverbs 13:16, “Wise people think before they act; fools don’t – and even brag about their foolishness” (NLT).

Keep your goals simple, but precise. If you have a savings goal, then it might look like this – $1,000 for my emergency fund by June 20.

The major keys to this goal is that there is a specific target ($1,000), a specific goal name (emergency fund), and a date to achieve it. First, keep your goals simple and to the point, then work out a way to achieve them. If you challenge yourself during the goal setting process, you will find that you can achieve a lot more than you thought in a shorter period of time.

2. Create a written budget

“And the Lord answered me and said, ‘Write the vision and engrave it so plainly upon tablets that everyone who passes may [be able to] read [it easily and quickly] as heAhmad Davis hastens by’” Habakkuk 2:2 (AMP)

A written budget is the key to gaining control over your finances and start telling your money what to do instead of wondering where it went. Once again, keep it simple. You can have a spreadsheet, a yellow pad, a piece of paper, or whatever makes you comfortable. Work these basic steps every month and you will see results:

  • Write a monthly budget before the month begins (October budget written before October)
  • Start with your expected income at the top
  •  Subtract out expenses by priority (giving, saving, food, housing, transportation, medical, clothing, creditors, debt snowball, entertainment, other)
  •  Spend all of your income down to zero
  • Walk out your budget to
  •  Make adjustments the next month to fit your life and habits better

3. Save money for the expected and the unexpected

“The wise have wealth and luxury, but fools spend whatever they get” Proverbs 21:20 (NLT)

One of the keys to building wealth is the ability to delay gratification. Saving and investing are the foundation of this principle. Now saving is for short term things that may occur within 5 years, while investing is long term five years or more. The very first thing you must do is start saving for things that you know are coming like:

  • Car repairs/maintenance
  • Non-monthly bills
  • Non-monthly memberships

In order to save for the unexpected you should have an emergency fund. I recommend three to six months in a non-investment account that is easy to get to, but not under your pillow.

4. Get Out Of Debt

“Keep out of debt and owe no man anything, except to love one another” Romans 13:8 (AMP)

Debt robs you of your ability to give, save, and invest. Every dollar in a loan payment is a dollar that could have brought you from broke to cash in the bank. Get out of debt as quickly as humanly possible, because you can slip into debt with credit cards, car notes, student loans, mortgage, and the like, but you have to be very intentional on getting out.

  •  Keep the process simple when killing debts.
  • Organize your debts from smallest to largest balance
  • Pay the minimum payment on all of the debts except the smallest
  • Send all extra monies to the smallest and pay it off quickly
  • Take the money you were using on the smallest debt and combine it with the next smallest debt to pay it off quickly
  • Repeat process until all of your debts are eliminated

Overall, the key to stop living paycheck to paycheck is to have cash in the bank. So work this process and I guarantee results.

Ahmad Davis is a coach with Victory By Design, a firm based in Beaumont, Texas, serving clients locally, nationally and internationally. Ahmad provides solutions for individuals, couples, and businesses who are overwhelmed and stressed financially. Ahmad’s typical clients’ are pastors, single parents, lawyers, couples, doctors, business executives, newlyweds, business owners, and others who want a simple solution with remarkable measurable results. For more information, visit http://www.thebiblicalblueprint.com. To get your questions answered on the Inside The Pew Forum, email Ahmad at coach@thebiblicalblueprint.com.

Gerard to fellow entrepreneurs: Trust Him, great things will occur

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Jennifer Gerard, founder of Whitening Lightning

By Jennifer Gerard
Special to Inside The Pew

Why did you create your business?

“After getting saved in 2009, it became increasingly difficult to be around all the negativity, cursing and substance abuse of my previous career as a sales manager for a carJennifer Gerard, founder of Whitening Lightning dealership. I prayed and asked God to help me. Several months later, a friend suggested I start a teeth whitening service and I did. The products I created for the service were a huge success and Whitening Lightning was born.”

What is the one scripture (or two) that you draw strength from?

“Philippians 4:13 is such a simple reminder that there is nothing too tough for our almighty God. I am reminded to put my trust in Him. I can and will accomplish ANYTHING He needs me to.

“I also love Isaiah 45: 6-7 which reminds me that every single action and event in my life is guided by the Lord Jesus. Therefore, no consequence or reaction is unintended. It is my reminder to look for what I am to learn from every situation and not spend time worrying about the future or being disappointed when I encounter an unwanted outcome.  It is all part of His plan.”

Share the best advice you can share with an entrepreneur?

“I have 3 pieces of advice for any entrepreneur:

  • Trust your instincts. The Holy Ghost is always there to guide us if we will only listen.
  • Believe in yourself. God made us all perfect in His image.
  • Respect yourself in business if you expect others to do the same. Others will only value us and our products or services if we value ourselves first.”

Have an interesting tidbit about your business or yourself that you would like to add?

“God can truly do ANYTHING. I started this business with $3,000 and in our first year we sold over $1.2 million. Trusting Him can lead to GREAT things!”

Jennifer Gerard is founder of Whitening Lightning Inc., a manufacturer and distributor of innovative and easy-to-use teeth whitening products and other beauty products. Want to have your business featured on our Pew Business spotlight? Send us an email expressing interest to pewnews@aol.com.

The WIN motivates women to live their best lives

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By Paula Fellingham
Special to Inside The Pew

The Women’s Information Network (The WIN) is an online educational andimage003 social network and an on land global community of women in 152 countries. The WIN motto is: “We Are Women Helping Women Live Our Best Lives.”

Why did you create your business?

I created The WIN because there is a rising and awakening of the women of the world that is more fast moving and far reaching than anything ever before experienced in the history of the world. The women are ready and yearning for our help. Experts worldwide are ready to share solutions for the challenges in women’s lives and we give them the global platform to do that, online (e-TV for Women) and on land (1,000 Global Women’s Summits being presented right now).

What is the one scripture (or two) that you draw strength from?

John 13:34, “As I have loved you, love one another.”

Share the best advice you can share with an entrepreneur?

Find your passion, learn how to monetize it, and share it with massive numbers of people.

Have an interesting tidbit about your business or yourself
that you would like to add?

The WIN is the fastest-growing global women’s network in the world. We have “Women of The WIN” in 152 countries.

For more information, visit www.theWINonline.com . Want to have your business featured on our bi-monthly Pew Business Spotlight? Send us an email expressing interest to pewnews@aol.com.

 

Three secrets to effective communication in a relationship

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Ahmad Davis

By Ahmad Davis
Special to Inside The Pew

Scripture of study: Proverbs 2:2″ So that you incline your ear to wisdom, And apply your heart to understanding” (KJV)

When my wife Regina and I first got married, we had our biggest argument, not over money, not over kids, in-laws or something common like that, it was over how to communicate with each other. So my biggest lesson out of our first argument was the money fights were a symptom and not the problem. The problem was establishing a best practice for communicating. So here are some of those best practices I discovered.

Step 1: Listen and Repeat

One of my strengths from the beginning of our relationship is that I am a strong listener. Yet, if I do not take the time to engage the conversation back, it can and will be perceived as I do not care about what is being discussed. So my strongest and best suggestion is to repeat back what was said with your input. This method shows that you were listening, have an opinion, and you are engaged in the solution.

Step 2: Repeat and Review

As I mentioned, after you have listened and got a good understanding, then you make sure that your spouse knows you understand them first before you try and seek understanding. In Stephen Covey’s Book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People,” he expertly explains that most people are continuously seeking to be understood. As couples, we have to be very intentional in a discussion to NOT try and just explain our own point of view, instead repeat back what was said and make sure you ask if you understand what they said. Most people are more receptive to your feedback if they know that you respect their train of thought.

Step 3: Review and Do

Now that you have effective dialogue going. The most important factor is to act on what you said. Nothing says I love you like action. Up to this point, you have listened intently, communicated your understanding of their point of view, and had your point of view heard. The best way for me to close this type of conversation is to agree to do ONE action that will SHOW you understood what was said.

KEY POINT: It is usually better for me to ask the other person to choose the most important action, that way I am not guessing and missing the mark.

Just in case you did not catch it, but the most important part of communication is listening, not talking. So strengthen your listening skills with effective an engagement system.

Ahmad Davis is a coach with Victory By Design, a firm based in Beaumont, Texas, serving clients locally, nationally and internationally. Ahmad provides solutions for individuals, couples, and businesses who are overwhelmed and stressed financially. Ahmad’s typical clients’ are pastors, single parents, lawyers, couples, doctors, business executives, newlyweds, business owners, and others who want a simple solution with remarkable measurable results. For more information, visit http://www.thebiblicalblueprint.com. To get your questions answered on the Inside The Pew Forum, email Ahmad at coach@thebiblicalblueprint.com.

Red Letter Paper Company helps customers ‘send a little faith’

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Stephanie Hinderer

By Stephanie Hinderer
Special to Inside The Pew

SANTA FE, N.M. – What is the name of your business? What type ofStephanie Hinderer business is it?

“My business is called Red Letter Paper Company (aka RLPCo) and I make Christian cards with a modern edge. I settled on the name because Jesus’ words in the Bible are printed in red ink, and these cards are my way of sharing Him.”

Why did you create your business?

“My husband and I struggled every year to find Christmas cards that reflected both our faith and our minimalist and modern visual tastes. If we couldn’t find what we were looking for, surely other people were having the same problem. As a designer, I knew it was a problem I could solve. I wanted to make Christian greeting cards that appeal to a younger generation and that are a bit more subtle so that anyone can send a little faith without being overbearing.”

What is the one scripture (or two) that you draw strength from?RLPCo2-small

“The verse I base my business on is 1 Corinthians 10:31: “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” As someone who was never very comfortable with sharing the gospel verbally, the cards and the business are my way of using the gifts He’s given me to share Him with others. This verse for me means that whatever I do, even making cards, I can do it for Him. I’ve also adopted Isaiah 6:8 as a verse for my business: “Here am I. Send me.” Perfect for cards, right? J”

Share the best advice you can share with an entrepreneur?

“I’m sure there are some entrepreneurs who believe in themselves and their business 150 percent from the get-go. I’m not one of them. I’m a quiet introvert who has at times struggled with confidence. Wondered if I’d be better off not putting Bible verses on my cards. Felt like I’d never be one of the big dogs. These are the entrepreneurs I’d like to speak to. The wonderful business strategist I’m working with pointed out this verse to me: “And there we saw the giants and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight.” (Numbers 13:33) If you see yourself as small, the world sees you as small. Make yourself an expert in your business, be confident, see yourself as a giant, be a giant.”

Have an interesting tidbit about your business or yourself that you would like to add?

“If you look closely, you can see flashes of my life in my cards. Each of them is personal to me. My popular {not sent from my iPhone} cards prove I’m a techie. The Twitter Christmas cards and Facebook birthday card show you I’m an avid social networker. The “You’re sweet” card features a glass of sweet tea — yep, I’m an original southerner. Many of my cards reflect my friends and their lives as well. I don’t actually drink coffee, but I can appreciate that love has caffeine. I believe that while the Bible is hundreds of years old, it can still be applied to today’s life and times, and I embrace the challenge of finding a corresponding Bible verse for each of my unique cards.”

For more information, visit www.redletterpaperco.com. Want to have your business featured on our bi-monthly Pew Business Spotlight? Send us a email expressing interest to pewnews@aol.com.

Ten things debt-free people do

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By Ahmad Davis
Special to Inside The Pew

People who are debt-free got that way because they operate a littledebt-free different from everyone else. If you want to be debt free, this is a road map for you. “Keep out of debt and owe no man anything, except to love one another;…” Romans 13:8 (AMP)

1. They get help being organized

Paying off debt means knowing what you owe, developing a budget and sticking to it. Debt-free people keep track of their bills, how much they earn, how much they save and how much they invest. They learn from experts and have systems in place to help them tell their money what to do, whether it’s an Excel file or another program.

2. They have a lot less stress

Debt creates stress. I did (a long time ago), and most people around me go into debt to relieve stress, whether it is buying a new car to replace an older one, buy some new electronic, go on a vacation or going back to school to increase your earning potential. No matter the reason, the bill on the other end causes stress. So us “debt-free” people do not create a bill to relieve stress, they pay for it with cash, solve the same problem, but do not have a bill at the end.

3. They use a budgeting system

A budget is simply a way to tell your money what to do instead of just wondering where it went. Debt-Free people use their budget as a system to make sure the most important things always get taken care of first and they invest, save, and have fun on purpose.

4. They pay cash

When you are getting out of debt, you learn how to use cash to manage your impulse areas. After you get out of debt, you use cash to fund your impulse areas.

5. They understand credit

Credit is not evil. It is a short-cut. It is the “Hare” in the tortoise and the Hare story. The person who uses credit is trying to get to the end fast. The problem is that the tortoise won the race every time.

6. They maximize value

I was talking to a relative of mine this weekend and she was wondering if we could find cheaper cuts of steaks in Texas (that is where I live) because of the cattle industry being so close. My response was that we should definitely be able to find a better quality.

Debt-free people are not looking for cheaper products, they are looking for high quality at a better price.

7. They’re more patient

The patience produces higher quality purchases, the higher quality purchases mean less maintenance and upkeep costs, the lower upkeep costs frees up more money to make more high quality purchases.

8. They compare before they buy

The general rule of thumb is that they do not pay full retail. This applies to small things like shoes all the way up to high ticket purchases such as boats, ATV’s, and homes. They will let the high impulse consumers test the market and measure their reviews of products and services to measure value and quality.

9. They’re not materialistic

Debt-free people might like nice, shiny toys but they don’t define themselves by their possessions.

10. They are loyal

Because of the time that is put into finding high quality products and services, once they find a service that meets their standards, they become very loyal patrons. Over time, the debt-free individual starts to occupy their time using high quality products, receiving high quality services at average prices.

Ahmad Davis is a coach with Victory By Design, a firm based in Beaumont, Texas, serving clients locally, nationally and internationally. Ahmad provides solutions for individuals, couples, and businesses who are overwhelmed and stressed financially. Ahmad’s typical clients’ are pastors, single parents, lawyers, couples, doctors, business executives, newlyweds, business owners, and others who want a simple solution with remarkable measurable results. For more information, visit http://www.thebiblicalblueprint.com. To get your questions answered on the Inside The Pew Forum, email Ahmad at coach@thebiblicalblueprint.com.

Faith Comes By Hearing receives 4-star rating from charity evaluator

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By Jeremy Reynalds
ASSIST News Service

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (ANS) – Faith Comes By Hearing audio BibleJerry Jackson, left, and his wife, Annette ministry has again been awarded the prestigious 4-star rating from Charity Navigator – a charity evaluator.

According to a news release from Faith Comes by Hearing (FCBH), being recognized for the sixth straight year elevates the ministry into the top 3 percent of all charities.

 

Charity Navigator said this means FCBH “demonstrates to the public it is worthy of their trust.”

FCBH said in his notification letter, Charity Navigator’s president and CEO Ken Berger wrote, “We are proud to announce Faith Comes By Hearing has earned our sixth consecutive 4-star rating. Only 3 percent of the charities we rate have received at least six consecutive 4-star evaluations, indicating that Faith Comes By Hearing outperforms most other charities in America.”

FCBH said the recognition is especially meaningful, as “Charity Navigator evaluates 10 times the number of charities than (its) next closest organization, and draws more visitors to (its) website than every other charity evaluator combined.”

Jerry Jackson, FCBH’s founder and president, said in the news release, “It has always been our priority to be good stewards with every donation given to complete our mission. The best way to ensure accountability is to be open with our finances.”

He added, “As an outside and impartial evaluator, Charity Navigator’s continued recognition of our transparency and fiscal responsibility is testimony to our current and prospective donors that they are giving to a ministry that is using their funds wisely.”

For more information go to www.fcbh.org

Pew Business provides offline, online networking for Christian business owners

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By Jacob Trimmer
Inside The Pew

Pew Business has officially opened.

Grelan Muse Sr., founder of Inside The Pew, has officially announced the premiere of Pew Business, a section of the magazine that highlights business-related news from the Christian perspective.

He said the section is in step with the mission he established when the publication was founded in March 2009.

“We want to the Christian community to have a place where business owners can network with one another and create business connections,” he said. “We are the body, and we want to highlight for-profit businesses that understand God’s word and use it in the workplace.”

Muse said Pew Business spotlight has been up on the site since March. One of the first stories included in Pew Business was Steve Green, president of Hobby Lobby. The National Bible Association presented Green with the John M. Templeton Biblical Values Award on April 15.

Muse said Lusi Chien, a Stanford University MBA candidate, who created the Bible Heroes app for children has also been featured in Pew Business. Just recently, Chien raised more than $5,000 through a Kickstarter campaign to allow her ministry to translate the apps into several languages.

Columnists from the business world and book reviews will grace the section. Current columnists include Dave Rawles, founder of CareerSolutions, a job seeker ministry that helps people land careers that is based in Bedford. Rawles is a former corporate HR executive. There is also Ahmad Davis, coach for Victory By Design in Beaumont, Texas. Davis provides readers with financial literacy advice.

Also included in the section are Pew Business spotlights. Each spotlight features small business owners who exemplify the core Christian principles in their work world. These features will run weekly beginning May 2.

“Throughout our years of service to Christian readers, we have run stories about the Christianity in the workplace, now we are bring other types of articles into the blueprint,” Muse said.

In the fall, Inside The Pew will sponsor business mixer events in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. These events will allow business owners to network with one another in person. He said more details will be presented as they become available.

To become a volunteer writer, email Tonya Andris, features and book reviewer for Inside The Pew, at pewnews@aol.com.

How to make money? Learn from the right sources

Published by:

Ahmad Davis

By Ahmad Davis
Special to Inside The Pew

Everyone’s journey to true personal financial freedom is different, but the path is similar. My journey started in 2000 when I was homeless and going through a divorce.

I learned some simple systems for taking control over my finances that have helped me to stop being overwhelmed, pay off debt, strengthen my marriage, and coach a multitude of professionals, couples, and businesses.

Step 1: Learn from the right sources

My oldest daughter is a stereotypical teenager in some respects. She loves to listen to music, her fashion sense is affected by the fads of the day, and she sometimes believes in the wisdom of her peers over the wisdom of us older people. So I decided to take a different approach when challenging some of that wisdom, I would ask for proof. This proof would be need to be in writing from another reliable source, and sometimes more proof is needed. I found that her friends were usually exaggerating about their knowledge or were just plain wrong.

Personal finance is much the same. There are a lot of “experts” giving different opinions about the same information.

Step 2: Do they work from a proven system?
Proven systems can typically be easily explained and have a step by step process involved. If your source can not walk you through the process from A to Z, walk away. This person or business either is not performing these steps in their own lives, have not walked other people through the system successfully, and/or have not taken the time to structure the information so that is easy to understand and simple to implement.

Key Point: Some systems are proven by personal example, some are proven by success of others, but all can be taught in a step by step format.

Step 3: Can you find it in Scripture?
If you look, the Scripture will give you guidance on what to do and what not to do with every part of personal finance from debt, saving, budgeting, investing, making money with a business, etc. One of my favorite Scriptures on this is Philippians 4:6: “Do not be anxious about anything,but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”

When you are receiving financial advice, simply walk them through this process and you will quickly weed out advice that is not in your long term best interest.

Ahmad Davis is a Coach with Victory By Design, a firm based in Beaumont, Texas, serving clients locally, nationally and internationally. Ahmad provides solutions for individuals, couples, and businesses who are overwhelmed and stressed financially. Ahmad’s typical clients’ are pastors, single parents, lawyers, couples, doctors, business executives, newlyweds, business owners, and others who want a simple solution with remarkable measurable results. For more information, visit http://www.thebiblicalblueprint.com. To get your questions answered on the Inside The Pew Forum, email Ahmad at coach@thebiblicalblueprint.com.

Children’s Bible app soon available in multiple languages

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By Jacob Trimmer
Inside The Pew

Easter is just around the corner, and 4Soils is doing its part to make sure children all around the world can learn about the

Thanks to generous donations, the 4Soils' Bible Heroes app will be able to translate their biblically bases apps into multiple languages.

Thanks to generous donors, the 4Soils’ Bible Heroes app will be able to translate its biblically based apps into multiple languages.

life of our Savior.

Lusi Chien, founder of the series of Bible Heroes apps, announced last week the children’s Bible app producer has reached the initial goal of raising $5,000 in its Kickstarter campaign.

“Only 6 percent of the world speaks English but many children don’t know the love of Jesus,” Chien said. “Help us change that by allowing us to reach them via our apps. Currently, the 4Soils apps have been already downloaded in more than 90 countries around the world.”

The $5,000 raised will allow for 4Soils to translate the eight apps into one language, one app into eight languages, or several apps into several languages.

Because of its success, Chien said the company has adjusted its goal and is aiming to raise another $5,000 to translate 10 more apps, bringing the total to 18 apps.

“This has been a project that’s near and dear to our hearts.  Ever since we launched, people have asked us if we planned on making it available in their language, and our answer has been we’d love to but we just don’t have the resources right now.  We’re looking for others who want to join us as “sowers” to get the seeds of truth out to children everywhere!”

With $5,000, Chien said 4Soils can modify the programming infrastructure of the company’s two series of apps to allow for multiple languages. Bible Heroes includes the stories of Noah, David, Daniel, Jonah, Esther, and Joseph. Life of Jesus features His virgin birth, baptism, miracles, the last supper, and resurrection. Chien said the last two apps in the Life of Jesus series will be available by Easter. Furthermore, the funds raised will allow 4Soils to translate a total of eight apps in several languages. 4Soils is not only looking for funding to translate the apps, but also volunteers to help with the translation, narration, and marketing in various countries, which will bring the cost down and allow for more translations.

A successful campaign for Kickstarter rests on backers meeting 100 percent of 4Soils’ funding amount. Therefore, if the funding goal is not met, Kickstarter will not secure funds from backers’ payment choice. It is all or nothing. Every dollar counts, and pledge amounts are never displayed to the public unless a backer does so themselves.

Pledeges will be accepted through April 2. To make a pledge for the 4Soils campaign, visit http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/4soils/telling-the-greatest-story-ever-toldto-the-world.