A DEBT-FREE CHRISTMAS
It is a struggle to live debt-free when bombarded with catalogs that entice us and coupons that lure us into the spending web. On average, I receive at least three catalogs in the mail daily. During the holiday season the number quadruples. Email accounts are cluttered with offers too good to pass up, at least that is what retailers would like us to believe.
Are you willing to separate wants from needs?
Retailers prey on our wants and desires. We are presented with “This deal is too good to pass up” purchases. We find it hard to pass up a 50% off coupon even if we don’t need it. Another retailer ploy is to open a store credit card with the promise of additional discounts. When applying for a credit card at the checkout counter there is little time to read the fine print about the interest rate applied to unpaid balances.
Learn to live within your means.
Credit card debt is epidemic. Young families continue to with a Keeping up with the Kardashians spending mentality; spending based on the lifestyles of the rich and famous. Advertisements present us as inadequate if we aren’t acquiring the biggest, best and latest of everything on the market.
Personal worth and value is personified through designer clothes, purses by Coach and the latest electronic devices. Our vehicles, homes and vacations far exceed our champagne purchases on a beer salary.
Are you buried in credit card debt?
I know the downward spiral of credit card debt; been there, done that and never again. Today I live debt-free and perfectly content living on a beer budget and window shopping with champagne taste.
If you are buried in debt, I encourage you to seek God’s help. Here are eight nuggets of truth about debt from God’s Word if you are willing to listen and obey.
- The obvious first principle is to live on no more than your current income.
- Borrowing is not a sin. It becomes a sin when we can’t control our desires and loosen our grip on possessions. “Better is a little with the fear of the Lord than great treasure and turmoil with it.” (Proverbs 15:16 NASB)
- God will provide for our needs but it is essential we understand needs from Jesus’ perspective.
- Debt makes us a servant to someone other than God. “Just as the rich rule the poor, so the borrower is servant to the lender.” Proverbs 22:7
- Budget under God’s direction not your own. God knows the future. If we allow Him, He will direct our life according to that plan. Whenever you are making a major purchase, seek God in prayer. He is more than willing to guide us if we listen to His Spirit.
- We bear the burden of our poor financial choices, but God stands ready to lead us through the difficulties.
- “For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?” (Luke 14:28). Let me translate into modern day language.
“Who applies for a credit card or line of credit before looking at their income to determine if they have enough to pay off the bill every month?”
- Contentment comes from accepting the lifestyle and provisions God has purposed for us. Learn to accept God’s provisions and plan for your life.
“I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.” (Philippians 4:11-12 NASB)