Edwin and I first heard of One Master Ministries from my mom who had started working with them. Her testimony to me, as her daughter, was incredible and it was obvious the Lord was using Carey and Andrea in a multitude of ways.
My mom, who is in her 60’s, was really struggling and had been for some time. Then she started working with Carey and Andrea and within several months the Lord had completely changed her thoughts on budgeting, spending, saving, and money in general. It was what I saw the Lord doing in my mom and how he was using Carey and Andrea and One Master Ministries that my husband and I decided to reach out to them.
Our initial meeting, after filling out a short financial questionnaire, was a great time of getting to know them. At that time, my husband and I were working through a few really particular hard areas, including money. We were thankful for their willingness to jump into our mess with us and help us at least tackle this one area which just so happened to overflow into other areas in a marriage!
Our first meeting was a time to get to know each other and talk about our current state of finances. We were not in a great place nor in a really horrible place financially but if we wanted to get out from under our debt and actually have savings instead of living paycheck to paycheck we needed to make changes.
We had a few other meetings after the first one, including one to set up the budget, but our favorite was the chance that we had with them to go out to dinner and hear their stories. We heard how God had rescued them, brought them along and what He was doing in and through them during this season of life! We were thankful for the chance to do that.
Weekly we would get “check-ins” from them and, as we became more and more established, we would have longer stretches between. With each check-in, the adjustments needed were laced with grace and a kind prompting to put a little more time and effort in as well as articles or videos on how to dig a little deeper!
Our finances have changed in so many ways! First, and the biggest, is that all the worry and anxiety that I had prior to budgeting, that was a current under the surface, finally came to an end. As I diligently put each dollar to use in its category, I was able to see the money be used correctly as well as see the areas that I was overspending. The overspending slowed down because I had the accountability in front of my face which I hadn’t had in the past.
Second, in using a budget, I was able to see exactly how the Lord was providing for us, which was much less visible in the past! As money would go in categories, I also learned prioritization. It led to a type of fasting in a way; fasting from overspending, fasting from spending without discretion and fasting from worry, all leading to a better, more solid trust in the Lord!!
Third, it also gave us the chance to build an emergency fund, which was a new concept to us. Budgeting with Carey & Andrea totally changed my understanding of emergency funds – it’s not to be an afterthought, as in if I have extra I’ll put it aside but rather, it is one of the first categories that gets money aside from tithing.
We began to see the Lord honor the use of money. The checks would be stretched out longer – somehow, some way! Most days it feels like we are still in the infancy stage of budgeting and that it’s an uphill battle to have a right and biblical perspective of money. I suppose we may battle with this, in some capacity, our whole lives as broken people. But the promise that we have from the Lord, through Scripture, is that when we honor him with our firstfruits, with our whole lives, we will be forever changed, little bit day after day! As a result, we’ve been able to save more, afford a more God-honoring Nanny to help us with our kids and see our faith in the Lord grow each day! I’m sure there are many more ways that we have been impacted by Carey and Andrea that the Lord will uncover down the road. We are thankful for how the Lord has used them in our lives and their willingness to jump in without hesitation and without judgment.