Drowning in Debt

Drowning in Debt

retirement

When my husband and I retired, I thought we were financially set with our federal annuity and social security, once we became eligible for it.

We never dreamed back in 2001 that gas prices would soar to almost $4.00 a gallon over a decade later. How could we have known that my husband’s unforeseen health problems would require two hundred and fifty mile round trips and hotel stays for medical appointments for several months?

I’m sure everyone has their own story to tell about unexpected expenses.

Yet, for me, I wonder if the fact that there’s often too much month at the end of the money isn’t overshadowed by the reality of too little faith as I finagle my finances.

For the love of money is the root of all evils; it is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced their hearts with many pangs. 1Timothy 6:10 (RSV)

I wouldn’t say I particularly love money. I do admit that I crave the security that goes along with having enough of it to comfortably meet our needs.

currency

I’ve learned that when my faith is undermined by my anxiety over my depleting checking account, I lose perspective on other aspects of my life.

My thankfulness for what I own becomes resentment over what I don’t.

My jealousy toward those who possess more than me overrides my compassion for those who have less.

My anxiety over what lies ahead tomorrow clouds my ability to deal with the issues of today.

How easily financial woes can cause us to forget this important message from God’s word:

Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? (Matthew 6:26 RSV) 

 

Tips to keep money matters in control:

Credit card debt – a transfer of debt from a high to low interest card can save hundreds of dollars

Recreation – a day at a special event with the family is always fun, but consider free options, such as visits to museums or art exhibits that charge low entry fees.

Contributions – don’t feel obligated to contribute to every charity that contacts you. Pick one or two that have meaning for you and support them as you are able.

Sales – many items cycle through a sale price on a monthly basis. Buy accordingly.

Treats – We all love them, but limit your snack foods to a certain amount per month. Don’t give in to the urge to replenish the supply every time you go to the grocery store.

Pray – When making a large investment decision, seek the council of the One who cares about your needs and understands your wants even more than you do.

Be grateful for what you have and be smart with the way you spend it.

We are of so much more value to God than anything else He has created. Is concern over money worth jeopardizing our relationship with friends, loved ones, or our heavenly Father?

 

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Patti Shene About Patti Shene

Patti Shene has enjoyed writing since childhood. Patti hosts Step Into the Light, an interview format Blog Talk Radio show. Since the show launched in September, she has hosted a variety of guests who share the ways they reach out to help others overcome the dark times in their lives. Visit her website for more.

Comments

  1. Wonderful, practical advice. We’ve been hit with medical bills, too. It can be very disheartening. Thanks for the tips here.

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  2. Your post is right on the mark. So much of our worry stems from not enough faith in God. Here, in Wichita Falls, TX. we have suffered 6 years of drought. Our water supply dwindled to 20%. Many sold homes, closed businesses, & moved away for fear that our city would dry up to nothing. Without water, we could never move forward. We couldn’t water outside at all. We conserved all the possible water use inside. Then, in 1 month, God pulled us to 100% capacity, with no more fear. God must’ve been thinking, “Why are they so worried?”

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  3. Thank you for your comment, Cherie. Praying for you and the medical issues. They make for tough times.

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  4. Thank you for your comment, Janet. I think so many times that God heaves a huge sigh of exasperation, wondering when we will learn to trust Him. We would save ourselves so much anxiety when adversity crosses our path if we would just relax and say “God’s got this covered! “

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