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“Help! I’m Broke”: Bob & Linda Lotich

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine
The Truth Network Radio
November 7, 2022 3:00 am

“Help! I’m Broke”: Bob & Linda Lotich

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine

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November 7, 2022 3:00 am

In a hard spot with money? On FamilyLife Today, Dave and Ann Wilson host Bob and Linda Lotich, who know the realities of financial shame. But they also know how to go from I'm broke to smart money management.

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Okay. Driving over here thinking about this interview, I thought, you know, there's two things that I am comfortable talking about in a sermon, like as a pastor on stage or on radio or in a podcast, but I'm not comfortable talking about them in our home. Two topics. You know what one of them is, because we're going to talk about it today.

Money and sex. How'd you know? Welcome to Family Life Today, where we want to help you pursue the relationships that matter most. I'm Dave Wilson.

And I'm Ann Wilson, and you can find us at FamilyLifeToday.com or on the Family Life app. This is Family Life Today. Well, I didn't know about money because that's the one I avoid. I feel like you always want to talk about money and how I'm spending too much. I do want to talk about it, but I sort of don't want to talk about it. It's sort of a scary topic.

Do you think that's true for a lot of couples? I don't know. A lot of people. That's why we're going to find out today, because I think I can walk on the stage and talk about God's perspective on sex, but then when we're in the kitchen and we want to talk about it, it's like, okay, that's scarier to me. I've done many sermons on money.

Give your money to the church, but when you sit in and say, let's figure out a budget and let's be careful and let's have a plan, it's like I just get... I didn't even know this about you. Well, here we are. I tell you things in front of the world instead of... But here's what we're talking about today. We got Bob and Linda, Bob and Linda Ladak, and you guys probably talk about money all the time. We've written a book called Simple Money Rich Life.

Achieve true financial freedom and design a life of eternal impact, and we read it. I mean, it started a conversation just even yesterday about money, but welcome to Family Life today. Yeah. Thank you for having us. Thank you guys.

You guys have never been here, right? No, this is really... Oh, it's amazing. And you have three kids that are how old?

Three, five, and eight. So this is a good little adventure for you. You're out of the house. I know. Kindly. Oh, yeah.

It's amazing. Did you watch it? Did somebody take care of them? Yeah, I have some friends. We've got a friend watching them. We just posted on stories walking through the airport without kids yesterday. It's like, it was amazing.

So much different going on a flight without kids. Yeah. So you were sharing something with us off air about money.

I thought it was good what you shared. Yeah. Well, I mean, I was just telling you guys that so many people come into money with all kinds of guilt and shame. And we're really trying to be the opposite. We're trying to be people who can cheerlead alongside you and help you on your financial journey and who aren't going to be dousing you with guilt and shame and making you feel bad for buying that Starbucks or whatever the thing might be.

I have a Starbucks right now. So there you go. Thanks, guys. Look at you. And it's okay. And you're not being shamed. Yeah.

I used to be, I actually used to feel really shameful about buying Starbucks because I had a little bit of an addiction and I think it was the addiction I felt shameful about. But I used to like hide them and think if Bob doesn't see it, then we don't have to talk about it. Oh, are we going to get into hiding things in our marriage?

Well, wait, wait, wait, wait. Why did you say that? Because some women. Some women? Might. Some?

Do you know any of these women? Maybe. I know her mom did that from her dad. I definitely do. My mom did it a lot.

So maybe it's a legacy? I don't hide it. I just wait maybe a few days until you're in a good mood. We need to talk about money, obviously. When you guys think about money, do you guys approach it differently? Are you completely the same or different? Oh, no.

Oh. No, we're very different. We're nine day different.

Nine day. Do you think that's typical? Yeah.

You do? No, I mean, we've talked to so many different couples about money and because we all have different upbringings, and even if you're from exactly the same socioeconomic class, the same neighborhood. How your parents teach about money or what they don't teach about money and what you inherently pick up, it's just so different. So it's inevitable that almost all of us when we get married that we have differing views on it and we can take this wherever you want, but I think one of the most important things is to try to fight for unity in this area. I mean, you guys know how important unity is, but I think especially in terms of finances, it's just so crucial because it's just a game changer. And you guys are on the same page pushing together towards whatever God has for you to do.

That is, you guys have to fight for unity? We did. What did that look like? So I'm a little bit more like you where I'm like, I don't want to talk about it. Before I got married, I prayed that I would marry someone who is good at math because... I thought you were going to say rich. Oh, well, I mean, yeah, it's my head that was there too, but... Good at math?

What was... Math. Yes, because that's all I used to pray. God, I want a man good at math. Yes, clearly.

That's exactly what I said. Why? Because I am the type of person who will get numbers, add them up on a calculator three different times and get three different numbers.

So you can imagine my financial situation just based on that. So I was like, if I can just get someone who can figure that out, right? See?

I'm not good at math either. Really? See? Yeah. It's just not my strong suit. I think you two are alike. I try.

It's not there. So is that what God brought? So Bob... You were attracted to Bob because he could do math. He was good at math.

Which is true. It's just funny. She just quizzed me with the math problem yesterday in front of our eight-year-old. It's just fun for me because I'm like, I can't do this mental math, but he's like... Your first date, you didn't ask him a math question, did you?

No. Can you give me the square root of... No, but when we met, he was like, I'm going to get my finances in order. And I was like, oh.

That's attractive. Right. Oh. So he wasn't... He was just after his car broke down on the highway and he had $7 to do with his account. This was just after that, like maybe a few months. Yeah.

Pretty fresh. So he was like, I'm going to make this happen. I'm going to figure out my finances and get things in order. And that was like, oh, that's nice because almost everybody else our age that we were hanging out with was kind of like, we're just figuring out life. Like, you know, they just didn't really care much. And I knew that marrying someone who had some ambition was really important to me.

That's a good thing. Well, Bob, you share the story at the beginning of your book and the introduction. So I was down in Sarasota basically on a seven month sabbatical that God had kind of called me to. Didn't know anybody down there. You know, and I'm living like the Instagrammer's dream before Instagram, you know, because it's like, I'm in a beach town.

I haven't convertible. It's payday. I just got paid. It's my 21st birthday. My friends are flying down the next day, like sunny and 75, like everything's going great.

And the truth is I've been hiding my financial mess and just kind of like pushing it back, pretending like it wasn't there. And then that day it's like, dun, dun, dun, and all that came to a head. So as I'm driving down right in front of one of the minor week ballparks there, like half an hour before a game. So it's all kinds of cars coming.

I'm driving down that road. Car stops so quick, dies so quickly in the middle of the road, I can't even pull it over. And I remember, I'm like trying to start the car, couldn't get started. Everybody's driving by staring at me, like gawking, you're that guy, I'm like, I don't know much about cars.

I'm like, I don't know what to do. And so I ended up actually, there's an officer directing traffic into the ballpark. I'm like, Hey, can you know, we get my car over to the side of the road is like, Nope, I'm directed traffic. So I grabbed the wheel, started doing the push the car thing while turning the wheel, which is harder than, yeah, good thing you have convertible.

Yeah. I ended up like pushing over to the side of the road. And as I get in the car, sit down and I realized like, all right, we got a problem here, because my car is broken down, which is a bad enough, but I realized I just gotten paid. I was on my way to the bank. I needed to get that paycheck to the bank and cash it so that I could go pay my rent that was due in three hours. And as I'm like thinking through all this, I'm like, if I don't get that rent paid in three hours, she's gonna tack on a $50 late fee and my paycheck is so small, I don't have the extra $50. I've got to pick up my friends from the airport in the morning, like, I'm like, how am I going to get this car towed, repaired, do that, like all this stuff.

Linda, it's God's grace that you didn't meet him at this point. I know, I know. So it was one of those moments where I remember sitting in the car and starting to have my freak out moment and just starting to realize that, you know, because I had worked at a bank and anybody would ask me, I would have said, I'm good at money, like I got this, you know, like I'm good at managed money. There's been surveys that have done that shown like 80 something percent of Americans say that they're good at managing money. When it's like, if you look at the number of people in the paycheck to paycheck, I was one of those people for sure. And I remember sitting there grabbing the steering wheel as I start like kind of realizing what's going on in my financial world, it's kind of crashing before me. And anyway, in that moment, like I have tears coming down my eyes, I'm like, God, I need help. Like my path, my plan has led me to this point.

If you have a better plan, like I want to jump ship and go your direction now. And like, and it was just a turning point moment for me, where it was like, you hit your bottom, your financial bottom. Yes. You know, and so many of us need to go through that, unfortunately, for those of us with thick skulls, you know, like me, it's good that you went through it at 21. Yeah. No, I'm thankful for that. And that it's not like now or, you know, some people like never get to that point.

And then you met Linda soon after that. And that was your answer. Yeah. I know.

I think she's going to get you good. I know like that. I mean, that moment changed my life too, you know, because if that wouldn't have happened, I feel like it completely changed the trajectory of his life. Now here we are talking about finances, which is just funny. I mean, what did happen?

How did you get wisdom about this? Not that it wasn't Linda. I'm sure she was part of it. No. And I mean, we'll get into more of that. No, I wasn't.

Because like, no, she actually added a, this is a long side note, we'll come back to that. But the first thing for me was realizing that the Bible said something about money. It's like, whoa, you know, book thousands of years old has current wisdom for today, applicable stuff that we can take and apply to our lives today.

And that was really crazy to me as a 20 year old, like just seeing that. And so as I just, I started the thing of just reading Proverbs, you know, and the once a day and whatever, and just reading that month after month after month, just continuing to go through it, fill yourself because there's so much, you know, wisdom in there about money and finances. And so that was the first part. And then just like getting hungry for knowledge and started reading as many books as I could, you know, this is pre YouTube, but like any kind of, I don't know, probably pre-podcast too. But yeah, anything to get my hand on. So any videos, magazines, books about money, just admitting that I didn't know as much as I thought.

And then going from there. I bet that that's true for most of us, isn't it? Especially as a 21 year old, we're just kind of carrying the habits that our parents were carrying and we're doing what our parents did, but you even biblically didn't know that God had a plan. And you talk about that in your book. Yeah, no, I mean, I was a pretty new Christian at that point and I just didn't know the Bible said some of my money.

It's pretty eye opening. Well, I mean, the truth is, and you know better than anybody, 40 year olds, 50 year old, six year olds are in the same place, isn't just 20 year olds. Exactly. Well, and many times worse because it's been years of accumulating problems or hiding things in the back room or whatever in debt. Yeah. Well, then when you guys get married, are you like starting out your marriage with a financial plan?

I'm on my way. I'm like, it's not quite the blind leading the blind. It's like I can see some shapes or something. You know, it's like I get a little bit one step ahead of her. That's basically where we're, but yeah, but I decided, all right, we both brought a lot of credit card debt, you know, and car loans and me a student loan into the marriage. And so I realized we have all this money going towards our debts each month. Like the best thing for us to do to get ahead financially is to cut out as much of that to reduce our monthly expenditures. And so we decided, all right, we're going to start going after paying off our debt. And Linda was a trooper because what that looked like, Linda, did you guys come up with the plan?

Like we're not spending here. Well, she didn't come up with any plan. I didn't come up with any plan.

I basically said, run it by me and tell me what's going on so that I can just be in on the loop. Because when we got married, I was like, I don't want to have to ever think about this again. That was my stance. So that's why I wanted to marry someone who was good at math.

Yeah. In my head, I was like, I need someone to take over my money because I didn't, I didn't even know how to take a step forward. So we get married and I just basically said, here's the mess. Tell me what we're going to do. And which worked out well for a little while because I didn't have to think about it. I was excited to take control and make a plan. Here's what we're going to do.

Like to him, it was okay that there was a mess as long as he could start seeing some progress. It's that control word that he just said. Yeah. Taking control. Taking control. So then what happened? Right. And he wasn't being controlling. Yeah. If that makes sense. He was just like, we're going to figure out how to fix this. Well, yeah. Sometimes it's better with one chef in the kitchen instead of two. Right.

And I thought, this is great. If there's no obstruction and she's, you know, I can set the budget however I want. So we cut back in every area. I mean, I went from spending about 150% of my paycheck every month.

She lived at home. Right. You know what I'm talking about, don't you?

I do. That's not a good thing. You guys are laughing about it. No. We're okay with it now.

We're comfortable with this. So you were living at home but still spending 150%. Oh yeah, 100% easy. And then we cut it back to about what, 3%?

Like you're monthly spending money, yes. It was such an insane reduction. I still don't know how you did it.

I mean, I cried a lot, but I was so relieved to not have to think about it anymore. I don't recommend the extreme approach to that thing. It really worked for us.

I don't think that this will work for everybody by any means. It was more extreme than it needed to be. What does that look like when you say it? Okay. So she spent a lot of money. You went out to eat all the time. I went out to eat all the time, yeah.

And we bought clothes all the time. Yes. So it was those three main things that I had to just wait cut down. But I will tell you this. So I had previous to this point, I had gotten a flat tire in my car.

This is what I learned at that point. When one tire goes flat, you at least have to replace two so that they're even. And I was like, you've got to be kidding me. I only have a problem with one.

Why do I need to get two? How old were you at this time? Oh, 20. I was so mad. And your parents weren't picking up any of your bills or anything. No. You're on your own. I'm on my own.

I mean, they housed me and they paid for my toothpaste and stuff like that. So I replaced these tires and it just stressed me out so bad. Well, after we get married, something like this happens. Something happens with one of the cars.

The tire had a nail hole in it or whatever. And I remember that same feeling of being like, how are we going to pay for this? It felt like someone was sitting on my chest. Like I just didn't know what we were going to happen because I knew how little money we already had, you know, because I was spending 3% of what I had previously been spending. And he said, whoa, well, the money's already there.

It's already sitting there waiting for us to spend it. And I was like, what? And it was a great moment. He was like your hero.

There's a concept of money for the side. Well, yeah, we have money set aside for car repairs and it's like I didn't want to spend it, but it's like it's there. And she was freaking out. I was like, hey, it's going to be okay. You're like, you're the most attractive man I've ever been in my life. I got so much sexier in that moment. It was great. Yeah, it was a great moment because all of a sudden this thing that I had been panicking about was no longer a problem.

And that sold me. I was like, okay, if I can't buy my Starbucks every day, that's fine. This is so worth it to me to not have to be that stressed out. That feeling of the weight on your shoulders is real. That money stress, whatever you want to call it, I've felt it.

I'm sure probably every person listening has felt it. I'm thinking our marriage is falling apart and Dave's sleeping fine and I'm wide awake. But if the money situation is falling apart, you cannot sleep.

And I'm sleeping like a baby because I know that Dave will handle it. It can affect every single part of your life. You could be yelling at your kids or your spouse and it's really connected to the fear of money. I'm in debt.

We can't pay for the tires or pay the mortgage. It's a real thing, right? This is why it's so important. The trailer we did for our book, that was how I started it, I've just learned this one thing and no one wants to talk about money. But it's so important. It affects us in so many different ways and so many aspects of our lives that I think especially as believers when we understand that it's not just about us.

We have the opportunity, yes, let's take care of our families, but to go beyond that and to impact eternity by supporting different ministries like yours and to be in that position to be able to do that, that's just been such a drive of ours. When we realize what's at stake, it's like, it's really important and we need to be talking about it. We need to be learning about it. Well, it's interesting that you, as we started talking about this, you immediately started talking about debt. I mean, we don't need to start with debt, but it is a big part of the plan, right? Yeah.

Just like baggage slowing you from wherever you're trying to go, whatever your financial goals are, whatever that looks like. And we read this book one time that it was talking about if Jesus himself appeared in many of the churches, in any of the churches and said, I want you to give your money to this, they would maybe not be able to say yes because they have a different master, which is the master card, which I just thought was so interesting. When you have someone else expecting your money, it's hard to obey what God is asking you to do.

Right. I was just going to say, I had a pastor friend who had someone who felt like they were called to come work on staff and went through the process and basically got to the point where it's like, all right, we're signing the papers, have salary negotiations or whatever. And he realized it's like, I can't accept the job. It's too much of a pay cut and I have too much debt. If I didn't have all this debt, I could take it. But so we ended up not taking the job and it's like how many of us are in that situation where God has something for us to do. But because of that, like we're held back and it's like, I just don't want to be that.

I don't want to be held up by it, you know? And we think the way to get out of debt is I need more money. I need a bigger salary, I need bonus, whatever, I need more money.

Is that the answer? So that's the interesting thing is that we all think money solves money problems, but it actually, in many cases, doesn't. And it's like, and I know anybody listening is like, well, of course, but if I had more money, you know, and that's the thing, but you and I both know you worked as NFL chaplain for years.

Like so many of these guys make huge salaries and you know, like we're talking to me beforehand, like over 50% of NFL and NBA players after they retire are broke. And so the answer isn't just having tons of money. You know, it's like you need to first learn how to manage steward well, what God has entrusted you with. And then as you do, then you can handle higher levels and you can use it with wisdom and you can use it to advance his kingdom and you can use it to take your family on a vacation without guilt, you know, or whatever that thing might be.

But we have to start where we are, you know, and this is just a parable of the talents, like just managing what God has entrusted to us and to do that well, you know, and it's completely reasonable. It's like you would never hire someone, you know, to watch your cat and then them not take care of that and then say, okay, I'm not taking care of my three kids. It's like, if you can't take care of my cat well, like I'm not going to give you the things I really value. Well, cats are hard to take care of, dog is a little easier, but the truth is when you think back on, you know, we just talked about, you know, cutting your I'm spending 150% of my salary down to 5%. You weren't making a lot of money.

You weren't making more money. But as you look back now, are you glad you did it? Even though you said you were crying because it was hard to do.

Yeah, no, I'm really grateful. And I mean, that was kind of what motivated us. So early in this process, what motivated me was the idea of things not always being this way. So if things were always going to be that way, it would have been a lot harder for me to stick with it. We knew it was a temporary measure, like of just paying off this debt.

And that's the only reason it worked, if I'm being honest, otherwise, I would have had a bad day and been like, forget this, you have an angle, you can see the finish line. I think this is what's so difficult is it's so many people, when they start whatever making any sacrifice, you know, we'll talk about finances here, in terms of paying off debt or whatever the thing might be, it's like, we aren't thinking through the lens of this being a temporary measure, we're just thinking, I just have to give this up without and we're not thinking about an end date. And when you put an end date on and you say, all right, I'm going to do this for one year, like it becomes so much more palatable, you know, because it's like, all right, I can do that for a year or for three months or whatever, and then decide, I'll do it for three months.

And then at that point, I'll decide if I'm going to continue and just that and then normally at that point, you'll have the momentum and you'll be like, okay, well, I can do this another three months. Where do we start? I mean, there's a married couple listening right now going, okay, our finances are in disarray.

And we're not talking about it. Where do we start? Okay. The best thing like we've been talking about this a good bit lately is having a conversation about the conversation because there's so many of us in this cycle of our marriage where it's like, we can't even talk to our spouses about money because it just immediately started the show. Yep. It immediately turns into a fight. Do you want to explain? Yeah. So how can we have this conversation without one of us freaking out?

So whether that's why I have to go get six more jobs or that's it. We're selling the house and the cars and you know, downsizing to a tiny apartment. Like how do we have this conversation without that or without us getting so frustrated? Usually I recommend ice cream is a great way to get out of the house on a day, get the kids away. I like how you said you're going to talk about money.

So go spend some if that's what used to happen, right? No, but like if this isn't going to be an environment where you feel safe or where you feel like this isn't an awful chore, I'm out. So get some ice cream so you can sit down and this, you know, at least have something I like and let's have a conversation.

Right. And start off with how can we talk about this without us freaking out because that's where we need to go with this. You're listening to Dave and Ann Wilson with Bob and Linda Laudick on Family Life Today. If this is an overwhelming topic for you, stick around because Ann's going to share the very first step in just a second. I wanted to remind you first that we'd love to send you a copy of Bob and Linda's book called Simple Money Rich Life. It's going to be our thank you to you when you partner financially today with us. You can give online at FamilyLifeToday.com or by calling 800-358-6329.

That's 800-F as in family, L as in life, and then the word today. Okay, here's Ann with what I think we can all agree is a good place to start when it comes to talking about finances. And I would add one more as we close, like start praying about this. Absolutely.

If you can't pray about it as a couple, start praying on your own like, Lord, I need wisdom. I need help. We need help. Yeah.

Guide us and show us. Yeah, and I would just add this. So we're going to end today like, okay, start the conversation with a cup of coffee or some ice cream.

Yeah. And then what? That's tomorrow. You ever think to yourself, I can't afford that.

Well, maybe you can. So listen tomorrow on Family Life Today as David and Ann are joined again by Bob and Linda Laudick to tell you how to think outside the box when it comes to your finances. On behalf of David and Wilson, I'm Shelby Abbott. We'll see you back next time for another edition of Family Life Today. Family Life Today is a production of Family Life, a crew ministry, helping you pursue the relationships that matter most.
Whisper: small.en / 2022-11-07 06:54:30 / 2022-11-07 07:01:42 / 7

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