One of the largest social media websites, Twitter.com, can be an effective way to spread the word about your business and learn from other top representatives in your business niche. However, it can take a lot of time to determine the best ways to use Twitter effectively for business. Below are ten tips to help shorten that learning curve.
With home mortgages, school loans, and car loans, young couples today may owe more than $140,000 within the first couple of years of marriage. This may seem normal to many, but God’s Word says debt isn’t normal, especially long-term debt (see Deuteronomy 15:6; Psalm 37:21; Romans 13:8).
The Bible says that Solomon was the richest man who ever lived and also the wisest ever to live (1 Kings 4:31). I think that makes him qualified to give some financial advice. I know there is some debate over whether or not Solomon wrote Ecclesiastes, so just in case he didn’t we can use the alternate title of: Financial Lessons from someone wise.
Knowing the pitfalls of many is often the best step to ensure that you do not fall prey to otherwise might be an easy to make common mistake. By staying away from these most often repeated mistakes you will avoid much of the pain which will otherwise will be created. The most frequently committed mistakes are:
1. Tax Planning. Many forget the value of a well thought out plan. Remember that failing to plan is analogous to planning to fail. Just as you would not set out on a journey to a distant city without a good road map first; so should we consider and carefully contemplate what lies ahead tax-wise. This will enable us to take the surprise out of our year-end taxes while also allowing us the ability to legally reduce our overall tax debt during the year while there are still great options to explore during the year. Just as a soldier can change the outcome of a war while it is still being fought so can proper planning do much to determine what will otherwise exist at year-end.
2. Deadlines. The whole of the tax code with its rules and filing deadlines are both date specific as to both filing and payment. Failure to abide by these can add substantially to your tax bill with additional penalties and interest for late payment but also assessments for the late filing of returns. Being aware of these deadlines and the correct forms to be filed and monies to be paid is your first and best defense in ensuring peaceful co-existence with the IRS.
The question on every investor’s mind is “What impact will each candidate and their party have on the performance of the stock market?”
In looking at elections past, market reaction to election results appear to work moderately in favor of Republicans. During the last 15 elections, the S&P 500 stock index rose an average of 2.25 percent in years when Republicans captured the presidency (nine times). Conversely, during the six times the Democrats won, markets gained an average of 1.31 percent from Election Day to the end of the election year (1).
Historically, during the same 15 elections, the average S&P 500 return for the year following a Presidential election dramatically underperformed that of an election year. Returns for the S&P 500 during post-election years averaged just 3.06% as compared to an election year average of 9.29% (2).
John D. Rockefeller founded the Standard Oil company in 1870. He was the first American billionaire and one of the richest men to ever live. I am sure many people today wish they could have walked in his shoes. If, somehow they could, I think some would find it to be eye-opening.
Are you richer than John D. Rockefeller?
As wealthy as he was, Rockefeller might have had anything that money could buy. But what a few hundred dollars may buy today, couldn’t be bought with millions 150 years ago.
Today, we have central heating and air conditioning, cars, planes, Tempur-Pedic mattresses, iPods, and millions of other gadgets. Even Rockefeller in his day couldn’t buy air conditioning. Maybe he had fifteen people fanning him on a hot summer’s day (because he could afford it), but I would rather have air conditioning. He probably had chauffeurs to take him by horse and buggy all around town, but I would much rather be riding in a ten-year-old Chevy. Wouldn’t you?If we change the way we think of “wealth” and compare our standard of living to Rockefeller’s, we’re doing pretty good. In fact, I would go as far to say the majority of Americans live an all-around more “comfortable” life than Rockefeller did. Who then, is actually richer?
How much do we really need to be happy?
If your household annual income is over $50,000, then you are in the top 1% richest in the world. (See for yourself at www.GlobalRichList.com) And if we can agree that most of us are living a more comfortable life than a billionaire at the turn of the Twentieth Century, then shouldn’t we be happy with what we have?
God is calling deliverers to rise up in this generation like unto Moses because He hears His people crying out over the harsh bondage of financial oppression. Today our oppressors are called the Canaanites, and we must beware of these merchandisers at all costs.
Allow me to explain. For the Israelites, it was the Egyptian system that worked them so hard they had no time left with which to worship God. Today, the Babylonian system has picked up where ancient Egypt left off. God’s instruction is the same: command Pharaoh to let His people go that they might worship Him.
Let’s not forget the prophetic word prior to the Israelites’ victorious departure. They were instructed to spoil the Egyptians. “When you go out you shall not go empty” (Exodus 3:21-22). Think of it, God didn’t want His people to worship Him with empty pockets. So there they were, delivered from the oppression of Egypt (symbolic of the born again experience) loaded down with silver, gold, and fine raiment on their way to…
Oh, I almost forgot, God instructed Moses to let the people know there was another place prepared for them. They weren’t on their way to heaven, but a place God called The Promised Land. It was a land “flowing with milk and honey.” In other words, it was a place of prosperity. Here’s the catch, it was also a land populated by somebody else. Those “somebody elses” were Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites – and these enemies were occupying the Israelites’ new home (Exodus 3:8).
It may seem unfair that God would give pre-occupied property to the children of Israel, but the reality is that God is the creator of heaven and Earth. He owns it all and can give it to whomever He pleases. After all, God has an attitude, He thinks He’s God. And He is! What these people didn’t know was they were merely keeping care of God’s land for somebody else. Notice that God gave His covenant people a mandate: possess the land (Joshua 1:11). To possess (from the Greek word yaresh) means “to occupy by driving out the former occupants.” That means, in no uncertain terms, invade, occupy and take over.
Gifts of stock and securities are one of the most attractive ways for you to leave a personal legacy. For many people, their portfolio of stock, bonds, and similar investments is the largest asset they own. As you do your estate planning, consider how gifts of stock can help you achieve the following objectives:
You are put on this earth to make a difference. Some cause is uniquely yours to help champion. As you reflect on your life, what issues have you been most passionate about? Caring for the poor and vulnerable? Fostering spirituality or education? Supporting environmental or cultural projects? Gifts of stock and securities can help you leave a meaningful legacy to further the important mission that you are called to do.