Simple, Meaningful Success

If you’re reading these words, once upon a time you subscribed to this blog. But that may have been several years ago, so I’ll understand if you don’t remember!

I stopped adding new content in the spring of 2012 when I joined the staff of Sound Mind Investing. I’m still with SMI and loving it. And there are some topics I’d like to explore that are better suited to this platform, so today I’m relaunching this blog.

Here’s what you can expect.


Money often feels anything but simple. Just thinking about terms like asset allocation, credit utilization, and fiduciary can make you want to flop down on the couch and grab the remote. But there are many aspects of money management that can be simplified.

“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” – Leonardo da Vinci

Sometimes simplicity is found in automation or using the right apps. Sometimes it’s about making money more objective. Don’t know how much a family like yours can afford to spend on this or that? There are guidelines, and they’re available through this blog.


This blog isn’t just about making the numbers work. It’s about making our lives work.

What I’m interested in are ways of using money that express our highest values and reflect our life purpose.

“When your values are clear, making decisions becomes easier.” – Roy Disney

The study of what makes for a meaningful life has become quite a science, and the research points to three key elements: Living for something bigger than ourselves, building strong relationships, and using our gifts and passions to make a difference.

For me, that “something bigger” is really someone bigger: God. My Christian faith is at the center of my life, and therefore at the center of my work. So woven throughout this blog you’ll find real-world applications of biblical financial principles.


Each week, there will be plenty of practical guidance. I’ll write about simple, effective strategies for building and managing savings, using a budget (I’m an unashamed fan of using a budget, which I consider the most powerful tool anyone can use for effective money management), living generously, getting and staying out of debt (something I haven’t just read about, but have done), investing, teaching kids about money, spending smart (a phrase I prefer over frugality since the smart choice is often not the lowest cost choice), and more.

Two Posts Per Week

I plan to write an original post once a week and a roundup post on Friday. I’m constantly reading personal finance articles, so in the roundup post, I’ll share some of the best articles I’ve come across recently.

I certainly don’t have it all figured out. I’m a fellow traveler, someone exploring ways to get the money thing right within the context of being a person of faith, husband, and dad to three young kids. I’ve made some mistakes with money, which I now count as some of my greatest blessings because of how they shaped me.

Financially, what I’m pursuing is simple, meaningful success. If that’s what you’re after, I’d consider it an honor to have you join me on the journey.

, ,

30 Responses to Simple, Meaningful Success

  1. Chris Cagle January 10, 2017 at 10:35 PM #

    I have been following you for a long time. I have also read a couple of your books. Great to see that you are blogging here again. Looking forward to your insightful articles!

    I started a blog about a year ago on Christian retirement called Retirement Stewardship, if you want to take a look: I address many of the topics that you are interested in, but mainly in the context of “retirement.”

    • Matt Bell January 11, 2017 at 9:47 AM #

      Chris – Thanks for you note and for letting me know about your blog. I checked it out and it’s great. I’ll be reading regularly!

  2. David January 7, 2016 at 6:07 PM #

    Woohoo! He’s back! Way to go, bro!
    Good to see your blog back and I always love the roundup! 🙂

    • Matt Bell January 7, 2016 at 7:15 PM #

      Thanks, Bro. Good to see I can always count on family to be reading the blog!

  3. Joshua January 7, 2016 at 2:39 PM #

    It’s great to have you back Matt! Thanks for sharing and all that you do!

    • Matt Bell January 7, 2016 at 7:13 PM #

      Thanks, Joshua – it’s great to be reconnecting with you!

  4. Pam January 7, 2016 at 11:14 AM #

    There is a lot of wisdom to be had when you know how and where to look for it. Thanks for your insights today. I will be sure to try to read your column more.

    • Matt Bell January 7, 2016 at 7:11 PM #

      Thanks, Pam. Glad to have you along for the journey!

  5. Kurt Salter January 7, 2016 at 10:50 AM #

    A welcomed voice of Christian values and the relationship with money. Thank you for being the light and guidance.


    • Matt Bell January 7, 2016 at 7:09 PM #

      I appreciate the kind words, Kurt!

  6. Karen January 6, 2016 at 8:41 PM #

    Thank you for starting this up again.

    • Matt Bell January 6, 2016 at 9:32 PM #

      You’re welcome, Karen. Thanks for your interest!

  7. Laura January 6, 2016 at 6:37 PM #

    Excited for a Christian viewpoint on finances. We live and die by our budget. PROUD to say.

    • Matt Bell January 6, 2016 at 9:30 PM #

      That’s awesome, Laura. Budget fans unite!

  8. Tiffany January 6, 2016 at 5:56 PM #

    Nice to see this in my inbox again!

    • Matt Bell January 6, 2016 at 9:27 PM #

      Thanks, Tiffany!

  9. Scot Hollingsworth January 6, 2016 at 4:54 PM #

    Delighted to have your insights in my inbox once again.

    • Matt Bell January 6, 2016 at 9:26 PM #

      Another blast from the past. Great to see your name, Scot, and to reconnect with you!

  10. Bill Hayes January 6, 2016 at 2:15 PM #

    Matt – delighted you are back with the blog. Blessings upon your work.

    • Matt Bell January 6, 2016 at 9:25 PM #

      Thanks, Bill! I feel like I’m at a Good $ense reunion. Great to be in touch with you.

  11. John Kelley January 6, 2016 at 2:03 PM #

    Matt, looking forward to your insights. Hope your family had an enjoyable holiday season.

    Regards John Kelley

    • Matt Bell January 6, 2016 at 9:23 PM #

      Same to you, John. Seeing you name brings back instant great memories of our days with Good $ense.

  12. Emay January 6, 2016 at 1:54 PM #

    Lovely, Matt! I look forward to you return. Welcome home!

    (I also read you at SMI, but have still missed you “here.”)

    All best,

    Emay in PA

    • Matt Bell January 6, 2016 at 9:21 PM #

      Thanks, Emay! Great to be reconnecting with you.

  13. Brad Brestel January 6, 2016 at 1:27 PM #

    Hey Matt, glad to read you are back! Looking forward to your contributions.

    • Matt Bell January 6, 2016 at 9:20 PM #

      Thanks, Brad! Makes me happy just to see your name.

  14. BJL January 6, 2016 at 1:21 PM #

    Yay! Great to see you back up and running, Matt!

    • Matt Bell January 6, 2016 at 9:19 PM #

      Thanks, BJL!!

  15. steven robinson January 6, 2016 at 1:19 PM #

    Matt, I am so glad to see your blog back with us! You have been a blessing to me with your great insight to keeping things simple and focused in this confusing and complex world. Looking forward to the upcoming information.
    Best, Steve Robinson

    • Matt Bell January 6, 2016 at 9:18 PM #

      Thanks so much, Steve. I appreciate the kind words. Great to be connecting with you again through the blog.

Share This