Debt Hurts! Get Out of It!

Are you suffering from some sort of pain? Of course you are, I know that. what if I told you that you could get rid of a source of your pain. You may not even realize that it is causing you pain. Debt. Debt causes pain, and you may not even realize it. But think about it, how does having debt cause you pain? Other than the annoying voice that never stops telling you to get rid of it. Debt has caused me pain in a number of ways. Let’s see:

  1. Arguments with my husband.
  2. Unable to get my son that swing set I know he would love.
  3. Unable to give the way I would like.
  4. Watching family with debt struggle.
  5. Making the dreaded payment every month.
  6. Unable to vacation to the places my family would love.
  7. Unable to start the business I would like to run.
  8. Unable to renovate our house.
  9. Unable to give my husband the truck he wants.
  10. Lack of savings for son’s college and retirement.

Now all of these things are not necessary to live a happy life, nor are all of them sources of great pain, but some of them are. What would your list look like? How does having debt cause you pain?

Now, what if all of those things were gone! What if your money was free and you could do with it what you wanted with God’s guidance!? Yes, I know what you are thinking. That would take SO LONG! And sticking to a strict budget can cause pain too…

Yes, but what about those other pains in your life not directly related to debt. Such as the loss of a loved one, or loss of a job. Wouldn’t those things be so much easier to handle if you didn’t need to think about making your payments on time as well?

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Romans 8:28

I know you are struggling and have pains in your life, but for those of us who believe in Jesus Christ as our savior, we can trust that the pain will lead to something good. It could be a lesson to be learned, or a door to be opened, or a person brought into your life at just the right time. Don’t forget that God’s plan for you is bigger than you could imagine.

By getting out of debt you can allow God to work in your life. Your children will see your discipline and determination, what an effect that will have on them! Once out of debt you will have the freedom to be a steward of God’s money and use it according to his plan.

The rich rules over the poor, and the borrower is the slave of the lender.

Proverbs 22:7

Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law.

Romans 13:8

The Lord doesn’t want you to live in debt. You don’t want to live in debt. Your family doesn’t want you to live in debt. You can start living God’s plan today. The journey will not be easy, it will take discipline and it will try your patience. But the joy you will receive and the pain that will be taken away will change your life and possibly many others!

Here are some action steps to get you started on your road to a debt-free life.

1.  Start a Budget 

Oh yeah, the dreaded budget. I know it’s hard to stick to, but when you do it will work and you will be a debt-payoff machine! it may take a couple months to get it right to! Don’t feel like you’re doing it wrong when your budget needs an adjustment!

I keep my budget using this budgeting system. There are wonderful budgeting tools on the back of the book. These tools keep me on track and from forgetting anything, even Christmas!

2. Buy only things you NEED

Yes, what you really NEED. Think about areas you can cut back in. For me, I cut back by making my coffee habit cheaper. I make my own coffee at home and I even decided to cut cut out those coffee pods I used and bought a reusable/refillable coffee pod like this one. Now I only pay for coffee grounds.

For my husband, it’s fast food. He has dedicated himself to taking his breakfast and lunch with him to work rather than buying fast food on the go.

Want to think bigger? Cut the cable!

3. Be cheap & don’t be ashamed! 

Who said cheap was un-cool? I say flaunt it!

4. Stick to it

This will be a difficult road. It won’t take forever, though it may feel like it. It might not feel like it’s working right off the bat, and if adjustments need to be made that’s okay! Give yourself the credit you are due, celebrate each debt payment with a little happy dance and remind yourself that this will work!

Now that you have a starting point, lets get to work. There’s no better time than the present. Get rid of this pain-causing debt and live a more free life. Be free of debt, free of money arguments, allow yourself to be an example to others, allow yourself to give abundantly. Start today!

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‘Tis the Season to Test your Stewardship


Happy Fall Ya’ll!

Can you believe that it’s fall already!? This is my favorite time of year. The crisp, cool air is perfect for bonfires and warm drinks, cozy clothes and beautiful boots! There is one down side to this glorious season – the holiday debt monster is lurking just around the corner.

Every year it seems like the holidays creep up on us with out our knowledge. So many of us end up at the end of November thinking, “Where will I find the money for Christmas presents?” This, after you have already spent your time, effort and hard earned dollars on Halloween and Thanksgiving. So out comes the credit card, that devil in your purse. By the time January roles around your trying to figure out how you’ll get the devil paid off in time for summer break and vacation season…

This doesn’t have to be the pattern of your life. God does not want this to be the pattern of your life.

The rich rules over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender.

-Proverbs 22:7

So many of us have hear this verse before. But for some reason, we borrow money anyway. I tend to justify borrowing money because it is something I NEED. (Like those awesome fall decorations!) Is that generally the case? Heck no. Borrowing money straps us up and ties us down. Worse yet, it causes all kinds of anxiety. Our heavenly Father does not want this for us.

If you really prioritize your desires for this fall and the holiday season, I’d expect that you, like me, would place spending time with friends and family at the top of the list. This does not mean spending money on friends and family.

Will we spend money? YES, but when we refocus our priorities on what is most important, things become less of a headache, and less expensive. We will also bring glory to God.

Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy. Instruct them to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, storing up for themselves the treasure of a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is life indeed.

1 Timothy 6:17-19

You see, this isn’t just our money. Actually, it isn’t our money at all. It is the Lord’s money. He gives and he takes away. Everything we have is the Lord’s. How will we take care of what he has entrusted us with?

Now that we are more focused, what actions should we take to prepare ourselves financially for the holidays?

  1. Most importantly, come up with a written budget for each holiday, NOW! Don’t wait!
  2. Start saving, NOW!

– If you don’t think you can save the money necessary, you have to increase your income or decrease your budget. Maybe the kids just won’t have the coolest shoes at school, darn (insert a hint of sarcasm). Or have a yardsale – it’s the perfect time of year, and I’ve seen them everywhere!

***For next year, you should set up a Christmas savings account at your local bank. I have one, and have for years! I LOVE IT! Every pay check I put a set amount of money aside. The great thing about this account is that I can’t take the money out until they send me a check in… OCTOBER! Perfect timing, right?

Now that we are focused on what’s most important for the holidays, family and being a steward of God’s money, I hope that we can enjoy the season like you never have before! I pray that our giving will bless others and shine God’s light into dark places.

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