Some years ago I went to see an intuitist who took one look at me and announced, “You have given away all your money.”

“Quack” was the first word that came to my mind. Of course, I had not given away all of my money. But later after I left the woman and pondered what she had said I realized two things: One, she didn’t mean I walked up to strangers and gave away money; and two, I didn’t have any money and was having an extremely difficult time financially.

Still, I forgot about the lady and the message. So occasionally God had to be very clear in showing me that I had the power to change my financial situation if I changed the way I thought about myself. In my case, I needed to see myself as worth more in the world in order to become worth more financially. It took more lessons than I have time or space to mention here, but I’ll recount two unforgettable incidents that hopefully will encourage you to look at how you see yourself and how your vision impacts how much money you have, how you earn it and how you use it.

I am the oldest of seven children and as the oldest, especially after my mother died, I saw myself as “The Mother,” translation: The Caretaker. In my head, the title gave my life value, worth.

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One Thanksgiving Eve I decided to drive from Washington, D.C. to my daughter’s newly purchased house in Atlanta to spend Thanksgiving with her. At first I was going to fly since I had found a special $150 roundtrip fare. But then I thought about my sisters and figured some of them might want to see the new house also. Two sisters decided to join me, each taking their daughter. We would split the cost of the rental car and gas.

A week before the trip one of the sisters cancelled. I had already rented a sedan, but thankfully I was able to change the reservation to get a smaller, more economical car. Headed to Atlanta with my remaining sister and her daughter, I was stopped by the police for speeding. The ticket was $150. I was furious with myself and God. After all, God knew I was on a tight budget—and now the trip was going to cost me more than if I had flown, especially since my sister told me she wouldn’t get paid until after the trip.

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