Missionary Kids and Money

by John Campbell

August 10, 2017

Most of us missionary kids (MKs) learned how to see the world though our parents’ eyes. We learned about cross-cultural sensitivities and God’s love for all creeds and colors. Sometimes it was taught but most times simply observed. For example, I learned in Latin cultures to always talk about family and health before ever talking about business. It wasn’t until I was older that I realized why we always asked a business person about their family first. We gained each other’s trust that way.

missionary kid and money

This is similar to kids and money. Just like my parents intentionally taught me about missions and cross cultural ministry, I can intentionally teach my kids about finances. Whether we like it or not, kids will see how we handle money and will take away both the good and bad practices.

We have the opportunity to teach and model healthy financial practices. We can start talking to our kids about handling money at any age. Here are some conversation starters I’m using with my 5 kids:

  1. Where does money come from? Who owns the money?
  2. Why do we tithe? How much should I give?
  3. Why is saving an important practice?
  4. If you received $100 for your birthday, what would you do with it?
  5. What’s a budget and how do you make one?
  6. What is “interest” and how does it work?
  7. How are debit and credit cards different?
  8. How will you handle money when you go off to college?

It’s never too early (or late) to start talking to your kids about money. As with everything else, it’s important to remember that they’ll learn not only from what you say about money but from what they see you do with it.

What are some ways you have shown your kids the lessons you’ve learned about money?

Category: Missionary Minded