Articles > Cash Flow
Understanding how an envelope system
can help control
spending and assist with financial cash flow
How Can I Control My Spending
With An Envelope?
By Amber Drabek
I never dreamed that I would be stuck in a financial
hole, as deep as I was, three years ago. God had led
me to a new chapter in life and to a new city. However,
the choices I had made financially finally caught up
with me. Whenever I felt empty inside, I would grab
my credit card and start spending. I needed my God to
fill that empty place inside of me—not material
possessions! God placed it on my heart that He had plans
for my life and they were beyond anything I could ever
imagine! Jeremiah 29:11 (AMP): “For I know the
thoughts and plans I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts
and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to
give you hope in your final outcome.” However,
the question that I had for myself was: How can these
plans come to fruition if my god was a credit card?
The Lord came to my rescue once again and led me to
the Financial Freedom in 7 Weeks Plus book and course.
God used this program to show me ways to control my
spending and my cash flow. A cash flow system is a way
to keep track of where your money goes and how it is
spent, saved, or wasted. One of these cash flow systems
is an envelope system. A flexible spending plan is projected
and planned to allot specific funds to specific spending
categories. Some examples of these categories are as
follows: groceries, rent, clothing, entertainment, and
Now, to use the envelope system, take your envelopes
and label them with these specific spending categories.
You can use whatever category you choose, but those
that you have a more difficult time controlling are
great places to start. Once you receive your paycheck,
place the allotted cash monies into the envelopes. A
log sheet or register should be used, for each envelope,
to track incoming and outgoing monies. If your spending
plan is balanced with a positive monthly cash flow,
then there should exist sufficient monies for each envelope.
Once the funds from an envelope are used, then spending
from that category must be stopped for that time period.
Money can be transferred from one category to another,
if need be. However, new debt is not an option. Restraint
and discipline are required for the system to work properly.
A simple envelope cash flow control system has enabled
me to avoid the use of credit cards and stop overspending.
This has been imperative for me to remain on a road
to complete financial freedom and to achievement of
God’s life plan for me. Of course, for anything
to flourish and prosper in life, God has to remain in
the center. I have to continually pray and to remain
in God’s Word. “Then you will seek Me, inquire
for, and require Me and find Me, when you search for
Me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:13 (AMP)