Proverbs 22:7 – The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender.
Frank and I sat down at our kitchen table one Friday morning this month. It’s still dark outside, kiddo snores are emanating from the bedrooms and the steam and smell of coffee is filling the sun room. We were about to embark on our financial budget meeting, something we had not done since January of this year. I was nervous yet super excited.
If you’re from the south it’s very possible that you’ve encountered the name ‘Dave Ramsey’. You may have even read some of his financial books, listened to his daily show on iHeart radio, or a combination of both. Maybe you’ve even taken his 9 week course, Financial Peace at your local church. Want to know something crazy? Frank and I have taken this course…twice. Want to know something else? We still have a little consumer debt, a school loan and small auto loan. <Face palm>
Neither of us really identify as what Mr. Ramsey would consider the “Free Spirit”. We are not risk takers or big spenders yet this debt hangs around like some sort of unwanted cousin! If we are both identifying as the “Nerd” why in the world are we still in debt? Part of it is we have failed to include risk. Another part of it is also that we are justifying it as ‘good debt’. Lastly, it’s hard to find contentment in such a consumer driven world.Lack of contentment combined with failing to say ‘No’ has put a tough spin on our financial situation. Up until the last couple of years ago, we were simply being unorganized and spending more than we were making.
So back to that Friday morning meeting. We’ve decided enough is truly enough. We made a plan that morning. We also sat and identified reasons that we are still hanging on to this pesky debt. There were several reasons but the biggest is that we say ‘Yes’ more than we say a simple ‘No’. We have no good reason to have any of this debt, therefore, it simply comes down to the Power of No.
No to that gift that seems too perfect to pass up. No to that lunch splurge because I forgot to grab a snack on the way to buy food. No to that birthday party. No to that needed, yet expensive date night. No, no, no….For a while, not forever.
We’ve attempted ‘getting out of debt’ before. This time feels different. There’s a solid, written down plan. We spat and shook before we got up from the table that morning. Not really…but maybe. Together, with a plan and embracing the Power of No we are paving the way to better money control, a better future, secure with solid stewardship. Here we find hope and that’s something to be excited about.
PS. if you see one of us walking around shaking our head from side to side, just smile, say a prayer for strength and know that we’re just practicing saying ‘NO’.
“I am happy and content because I think I am” – Alain Rene Le Sage