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Why I Became A Financial Planner: Ben Wacek Thumbnail

Why I Became A Financial Planner: Ben Wacek

I have been a financial planner all of my adult life. Many of you may know the story behind why I started Guide Financial Planning—it’s written on our website and I share it in all of my introductory phone calls. But I don’t often talk about what came before that and why I decided to become a financial planner. Today I will.

My Natural Gifting

I didn’t grow up wanting to be a financial planner, but I was always good with math and numbers. From a young age I have been analytical and enjoyed strategy and solving problems. It was such an obvious strength of mine that in elementary school I was moved ahead a grade in math so that in my last year I had to get shuttled to the junior high school for my math classes, in ninth grade I had to go over to the high school, and I started college math in high school. 

When I started college at Bethel University, I was actually an engineering major. However, it didn’t take long for me to realize that wasn’t the right fit for me. I would sit in my physics class and look around at my classmates who were passionate about physics and I just couldn’t relate. I like physics, but not the way they did. Within a month, I switched to major in business. 

My Personal Interests

I have always enjoyed working with people, specifically helping people and making an impact on their lives. I was attracted to both the fields of teaching and pastoring because of how I wanted to be able to talk with people and make a difference in their lives. 

Once while I was in college, I did an informational interview with a financial planner. In the middle of the interview, one of his clients called and needed to talk to him. I only got to hear one side of the conversation, but I was fascinated by how his client sought out his thoughts and he provided feedback. I thought it was the coolest thing ever. 

I realized that financial planning is the perfect combination of analytical problem solving and working directly with people to make a difference in their lives. It may even be in my blood, because though my dad was an engineer, he was always interested in personal finance. People would seek out his advice and he would help them talk through their decisions and share his financial knowledge freely. He even became the go-to guy at our church for those needing financial guidance. He’s now on staff at Guide Financial Planning as his “encore career.”

Discovering Christian Financial Planning

One thing that wasn’t on my radar when I first became a financial planner but is now a big part of the recommendations I give clients is incorporating faith into financial planning.

Early on in my career, maybe even during the first year, I was invited by another financial advisor to attend the Kingdom Advisors conference. I remember sitting at a table at that conference and talking with an older man. At that time, incorporating faith into financial planning was a brand new idea to me. This man engaged me in conversation, asking me questions and sharing his passion to incorporate faith into the financial planning relationship. To my surprise, when it was time for the next speaking session, that same man walked up to the podium- it was Ron Blue, the founder of Kingdom Advisors! Talking with him for half an hour about biblical principles and how they relate to finances was an eye opening experience for me that changed the trajectory of my career. 

Seeing that financial planning doesn’t just have to be about accumulating wealth for the sake of it, but rather encouraging clients in their relationship with God and their contentment was a game changer. For a lot of my clients, the most important thing in their lives is their faith. To be able to help them with their finances so that they can do more for the Kingdom of God gives an eternal purpose to my career.

God may not have called me to be a pastor or teacher specifically, but I’m blessed to be able to incorporate both of those things into the unique call that he has on my life to be a Christian financial planner. In fact, this is true of all of the financial planners on our team. If you would like to learn more about working with my team, you can schedule a free introductory phone call here

About Ben Wacek

Ben Wacek is a Christian fee-only Certified Financial Planner™ and Certified Kingdom Advisor®. He has a passion for helping people of all income levels make wise financial decisions and steward their resources from an eternal perspective using Biblical principles. Based in Minneapolis, MN, he works with clients both locally and virtually throughout the country and abroad through the firm he founded, Guide Financial Planning. You can follow the links to learn more about Guide Financial Planning and our team and the services we offer.