Living on one income never crossed my mind. I grew up thinking I was going to be a working mom. I love to work and I never imagined myself being a stay at home mom.
Let me back up a little bit. I moved out of my parents house when I was 17 years old. I was very independent and learned to support myself. I wasn’t a solid believer at the time. I grew up knowing who God was but I never had a relationship with Jesus.
A few years later, I found the love of my life and got married. A few years after we got married, I got pregnant with twin girls. It was during this time that I had a hunger to know the Lord. I started attending women bible studies and accepted Jesus as my personal Lord and Savior (here is my testimony of faith).
My husband recommitted his life to Christ (he was a backslidden Christian) and we made the decision to have a Christ-centered marriage. We wanted our kids to know Jesus.
As we came to know Jesus and commited our life to Him, He showed us areas in our lives that we needed to change. One of the biggest changes we needed to make was me staying home. I worked and I loved it but the Lord had other plans.
He made it clear that I should stay at home and homeschool the kids. It was a battle for me because it was so far from my desire in life. I wanted to work and I was comfortable with the income we were bringing in each month.
I finally surrendered and stopped working. It was truly a struggle because we had to go from living on two incomes to living on one income. We had to downsize our house, sell one of our cars, and get rid of the other luxuries we had.
The easy part was I knew how to save money. Moving out at 17 years old helped me because it taught me how to spend money wisely. Little did I know that the Bible talked about being a good steward of money. It’s funny how the Lord works. He gives us wisdom in everything we need to accomplish His plan.
“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28 NKJV
It has been a little over 10 years that we have been living on one income. It has been such a blessing. I still have a desire to work but I know that I need to be obedient to what the Lord has called me to do.
I want to share how we made living on one income work for us. It doesn’t happen overnight. Anyone can do it. You may need to make sacrifices but it is definintely worth it.
Living on One Income
- Discuss Your Finances with Your Spouse
My husband and I share money. We don’t have separate accounts. It’s important to make sure you and your spouse are on the same page. We both knew what the Lord wanted us to do and we wanted to be obedient. We were willing to do what it took to live on one income.
We had to re-evaluate our budget. We removed half of our income so we definantely had changes to make. It was a matter of being comfortable with what we decided to spend money on. The things we needed to survive came first. Then we had a tiny bit left over for things we wanted. We had to be very careful what we spent that extra money on. We didn’t want to spend more than we had.
Create a Budget or Tighten Up Your Budget
Everyone should create a budget. It doesn’t matter how much money you have. You need to have control over your money and know exactly where it goes. Don’t let money control you.
We have always had a budget but we needed to revamp it because we were getting rid of one income. Downsizing our home helped us a lot. We were able to cut our mortgage in half. We also found areas where we were over spending. Like eating out. I made the commitment to cook at home 7 days a week. We limited eating out to a couple times a month.
Practice Living on One Income
Living on income is a huge change and can cause issues if you are stressed. We decided to practice living on one income so we could see what kind of impact it would have on us. We took my paychecks and put them in a savings account until we felt comfortable with the transition.
This ended up working well and we were able to pay off debt in the process with the extra paycheck. We ended up paying off all our debt before we made the transition to living on one income.
Learn How to Save Money
Saving money had to become a part of our life. It doesn’t have to be difficult. I learned how to use coupons to help with my grocery store trips. Everytime we go somewhere I look online for a coupon. Every little bit helps.
I put together a list of the best ways to save money that are practical. You should be able to find a few ways to save that work for you.
It’s so easy to look at other people’s situations. The truth is, God has us right where He wants us. We need to be content and trust that God will provide for us. We’ve been living on one income for over 10 years now and He has never failed us. We don’t have everything we want but we have everything we need.
“And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Phil. 4:19 NKJV
Living on one income has been a blessing in my life. It’s not the life I had planned but God’s plans are higher than mine and I’m ok with that.
A Bit About Apryl Griffith
Apryl has been married for 16 years and is a mother to 3 children. She’s been living on one income for the past 10 years. When she’s not homeschooling her children, she is blogging about ways to save money on her blog Money Wise Steward.