My wife Cathe and I recently sat down with Shaunti and Jeff Feldhahn, researchers and authors of Thriving in Love & Money, to discuss why it’s so hard to bring up the topic of money in relationships.
Shaunti and Jeff are both Harvard graduates, and their new book is the product of three years of research into the root of the conflicts we have about money, especially in marriages. And they found it’s not so much about money as it is about communication.
I asked them, Why do you think this is such an emotional subject?
Shaunti put it well:
Honestly, it comes back to what Jesus said. It’s where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. It turns out that a lot of us have treated it like a technical issue. Like it’s about budgeting or getting out of debt or planning.
And listen, all of that is important. That wasn’t what we were studying. But we were trying to figure out what’s underneath all of that. And that’s the stuff that has to come before you can even be willing to talk with your spouse to be able to budget or plan.
This blows my mind and it blows a lot of pastors’ minds: the greatest obstacle to all of the budgeting to the financial freedom, everything that a pastor wants his people to be in his church, to be generous, to be tithing—the greatest obstacle is the inability of a husband and wife to sit down at the kitchen table and talk about money.
This is a communication issue. So that’s the answer to your question—it really is about this incredible opportunity for money to be an opportunity not for conflict, but for connection, which is huge for a lot of people right now. Especially right now. We need that.
Do you see money as a source of conflict, or an opportunity for connection?
Listen to the whole interview in this episode of A New Beginning for some great insights on this important subject.
For deeper insight on communication and marriage, get your own copy of Thriving in Love & Money when you make a gift of any amount at harvest.org/donate.
Learn more about Pastor Greg Laurie.