Financial Peace

First of all, thank you to those of you who supported us through a really tough week. Cameron was recently in the hospital with pneumonia for four days. He had already missed a couple of days of school before we took him in to get checked out. We were supposed to be going to our second class of Financial Peace when mom’s intuition said, “Something is really wrong here. We need to go to the ER instead.” Cameron has recovered and is doing much better. So, thank you for supper, Gloria, and thank you, Dan, for dropping in with cookies and jam and get-well notes from your kids. Thanks to those of you who encouraged me on Facebook and kept me going, knowing we were covered in prayer and good thoughts. There’s nothing like a sick child in the hospital to throw you off course and drain your energy.

Let’s back up a little to the Financial Peace part. Tim and I signed up for the course along with about 36 others and have attended one class already. I didn’t really know what to expect but had heard really good things about it. Last year our HouseChurch talked about doing it as a group but it didn’t work out, so here we are. Tim and I have wondered off-and-on if it was something we needed or if Dave Ramsey was just going to tell us stuff we already knew. We have a financial advisor, and she encourages us that we are on the right track.

This time around, however, God nudged us to jump on the wagon and go for a ride with many of our friends. Here we go! The first class was a bit overwhelming at first. Yes, we were doing a couple of things right, but there were a few major things that we were doing wrong (along with the majority of North Americans). A couple of questions right off the top were, “Do you have $1000 in an emergency fund?” No! Dave said to expect things to happen—emergencies come up. Wouldn’t you know it but last Saturday on my way to see Cameron in the hospital, I was rear-ended. Because of the way it happened and there being no witnesses, I got stuck with half the bill and a surcharge on my license. Life happens. That question didn’t seem so offensive when I heard the next one. “Do you have an account with three to six months worth of expenses in it?” Ah—does anybody in our age bracket? That would be another NO.

Well, that first class was a real eye opener. It was at least comforting to know that we were on the right track with credit cards, the envelope system, and investing. We’re not getting it all wrong. Even though I felt a little sucker-punched that first class, I also felt that Dave Ramsey was going to get us on the right track, if we were willing to put his ideas into practice. Part of me wanted to resist because I am a spender not a saver but at the same time, I knew this course would be a good thing. Accountability here we come. I am the one who does most of the shopping and looks after the bills and generally we do fine, but hearing some of the principles that Dave talked about made good sense and although they may be difficult to implement at first, they will bring us financial peace and help us to relax with our finances.

One of the things we learned that isn’t very shocking is that North Americans don’t save. We live paycheque to paycheque, spending what we have without an emergency fund or a savings account to pay for bigger purchases. Many use payment plans and credit cards because we are a “here and now” society. We have been trained to want what the Jones’ have without having to work hard and wait for it.

I am curious to see where Dave takes us over the next eleven weeks. I am already feeling challenged but in a good way. Tim and I want to be good stewards of our money and this is a good way to learn how to do it.

The changes we’ve made so far have given me a sense of freedom, control and peace all at the same time. Feel free to ask us how we’re doing over the next two months

  1. Anonymous
    May 10, 2010 at 7:21 pm

    Finances are a big part of life. I believe we can accept advise but at the same time everyone’s situation is different. I believe not so much taking people’s advice but most importantly doing what the Bible says. It has the best wisdom. Hope the little guy is doing better.

  2. May 10, 2010 at 7:38 pm

    I agree. This isn’t for everyone. For us, it has been very beneficial. Instead of being in debt for another fifteen years, we’ll be debt free in half that time. It takes discipline but it’s worth it in the end (and we aren’t depriving ourselves of anything right now, we’re just spending wisely) This course is also Bible based.

    And the little guy is doing much better thank you. Poor kid was in the hospital for four days.

    Alison 🙂

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