Ideally in dating someone you would have had many conversations about the lifestyle you want together. You would have asked the other to paint a picture of what they saw themselves having and how they saw themselves living 2, 5, 10, 20, 30, 50 years down the road.
Whether we are aware of it or not, I think most people when pressed could articulate how they saw themselves living and with what kinds of things around them for the future - at least to some degree.
Even if one is called to a life of poverty and sees themselves living among the poor and choosing a simple lifestyle, that is one person's specific picture. Marrying someone with the same picture in mind would be really helpful for this person. Their pictures matching up well would help ensure a happy life together.
As a side note, I recently took a lengthy survey of my own thoughts and experiences to determine some God given charisms I have. It turns out that I score very low in the category of mission/poverty. This isn't a less virtuous or bad place to be. It is no more or less holy than someone with great wealth.
Anyway, it is helpful for my marriage that Ben also matches up more closely to a kind of lifestyle I envision and am naturally attracted to.
Still, we have our differences.
Our threshold for feeling secure in our family finances is quite different.
I prefer more money in the bank just to be there in case...I am rattled by a situation that doesn't match up with this. I am out of my comfort zone so to speak when savings are spent.
Ben has less attachment to a certain amount of money that is just there, in case....He is certainly responsible with money, but he does not come quite as unglued as I do with prospects of less in savings.
Herein lies one of our "issues". An imbalance occurs in our relationship when our pictures of financial health do not match up.
There is probably some trust issues here, but anyway...
We are mainly a one income earning family. Ben earns most of the income that supports us. He is very aware of and pays attention to how well his income serves and blesses our lifestyle. It is the source of a lot of conversation and some stress depending on the times/circumstances.
I have seen over the years the amazing blessing of things like unexpected timely bonuses. Come to think of it, when is a bonus not timely? I have experienced the joyous news of a raise and the pride in his voice that he earned it and now we can do "x". I have experienced the generosity of an anonymous donor couple who left some money for us very early in our marriage because they had received the same when they were first starting out. I have known the comfort of rebates, tax refunds, REI dividends in our mailbox, stocks doing well, etc.
We have been blessed. We have attempted to live within our means while having the fun and "extras" that also bring joy and enhance family life.
I think the following prayer is an okay one to pray.
Our lives are meant to be lived well.
Even if one is called to live without many or much material possessions at all, praying for others to be so blessed helps the whole Body of Christ grow too.
Prayer Part Three:
Grant him (us) more than enough income to provide for our family
and to serve Your people.
and to serve Your people.