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Indebted to Love

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine
The Truth Network Radio
June 24, 2020 9:00 pm

Indebted to Love

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine

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June 24, 2020 9:00 pm

Could arguing about money be negatively affecting your intimacy? Brian and Cherie Lowe, authors of "Your Money, Your Marriage," think it can. It certainly did theirs. The Lowes tell how they found themselves $127,000 in debt. After Brian cast a vision for what their life could be debt-free, they started paying off their bills, and as they did, their love life began improving. The Lowes encourage couples to slay the debt dragon and fall more in love!

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Sherry Lowe knew she and her husband Brian had some debt she just didn't know it was six figures a bit until her husband told her it was time for a talk. I don't think I really knew the totality until he had that legal pad moment where everything was written down and it hit me like how this is a huge amount of money and if we keep living the way where living it's going to get any better it's going to get bigger. That is going to grow instead to have to do something. We can't just stay here. This is family life today. Our hosts are David and Wilson on Bob Lapine. There's money stress in your marriage. It's affecting your oneness, your relationship with each other talk more about that today with Brian and Sherry Lowe. Welcome to family life today. Thanks for joining us guys ever have money conflict in marriage money issues above is any couple not have married. We rarely had really money conflict and part of that's because my wife is very thrifty, so cheap that there was never any overspending stuff. And if you touched on the nerve you have had. I can't wait to talk about this but will talk to Sherry O'Brien logo join us to bring the book called your mother, your marriage is welcome to family life today. Thank you so much and your story is a part of why you wrote not only this book but book slaying the debt Dragon and I ask you, Sherry earlier. So how far and that were you and what you tell me. So we paid off $127,482.30 which he said 37 this this was the hallmark of a fun story actually overpaid Sallie Mae by $0.33 and we called them and tried to get the 33 think where this is your second foray into the subject because there were some stuff when you wrote about selling the debt Dragon that you really didn't get to talk to about the relational dynamic of all this right. Definitely you know we really learned so much through writing that first book and it was interesting to get feedback from readers who said this is a good book about money that we think there's some better ideas in here about marriage even and so we wanted to further explore that a little bed and to do that together. Well it's interesting because the subtitle is the secrets to smart finance, spicy romance, and their intimate connection.

I'm so intrigued.

If you think about it just for first speech was so think about it. Arguments about money.

Pull us apart so we started considering agreements about money can't help but push us together but that's anecdotal so that we, dug into some empirical data to see if we were right about it turns out, people fight about money. Think about it personally like the last time that you had a fight about money probably didn't end the night of passion so you know, we began to kinda dig deeper into that bad. Certainly, we know that sex and money are two of the top reasons why people get divorced, but was it possible that the things that you learn about managing money well together could be transferred into more intimate areas of your marriage as well so let me back at all of us don't know how would you get 127,000 whatever the number one how did that happen in the first place by not paying attention. That's the main way and certainly we had a lot of student loan debt and I think a lot of people in the United States especially are saddled with student loan that we had credit card debt to the tune of about $16,500, which is actually the national average. So if you have that you're not alone. A lot of people do. We had card that we had medical debt because we actually just had our second child at that point, so babies are beautiful and a blessing.

But there also very expensive and we had purchased furniture on a payment plan so we had that he had a gap loan where we were unemployed. It was just this mixed bag of assorted dad where we were taking everyone else's advice about money and really not paying attention Brian how long into all of this debt accumulation did it take for you to move from. I'm okay with this. We can manage it. 200 were in trouble and I'm starting to panic here. We started April 2, 2000 and really being committed to never start anything on April 1. This is all okay and so two years prior to that I actually communicated with Sherry that I wanted to get out of debt and that's exactly how I communicated to her and it failed because one of the things that that I realize and it took a couple years to realize is that if you don't approach something in love, your never going to succeed go to her and say sweetheart and I been praying about this and this is something that's on my heart. Not like us to come together in and see if if this might be what the Lord would want for us to get out of that somehow you handled to talk to you first hear how did you go to swim. So I will get out of that. It was more by fiat than anything else.

All it was. It was more here's here's what were going to do. I want to do this, and two years later we still done so. Two years later you would you do you change something changed everything. I started thinking about casting a vision for what a lot of folks call postcards from the future. What will it look like if we pay this off. What could we do for the kingdom of God.

What can we do to change our family tree, what could we do to send our kids the college or community things that we wanted to give to. Could we retire early.

Could we spend more time together. Could we go on vacation, and so those types of things where I'm more inviting Sherry into the journey with love is really the approach that helps you with all my heart on here because when he encouraged me to dream bag and really answer that question of when we do if we weren't putting so much money every month toward payments and interest being there to that knows this. Plans like evening that you decide this over time I think about this.

I can do this you go out to Ruth Chris you know how much money and say Her know I'm getting really did you sit down and say today's the day. There was no distraction. It's one of those things we have to set an environment in the book we talk about popcorn everything is better with popcorn, so having a snack. I don't actually have popcorn in that moment, but having having a meal, maybe not. Ruth's Chris you know a lot of people money, but having a meal together breaking bread together a literal communion with your spouse to talk about important things and to dream big together. So I think was a few of those talked about an insurer is a practical matter, couldn't wrap her brain around it because she did the day-to-day finances and I didn't and she did the grocery shopping and I didn't and so that's something I really had to listen to her concerns and her needs.

They said it was approach to start with love. Let me ask you this. Was there any anger and I don't mean bad anger, but holy discontent anger like this is enough. Not with each other or not you got to that point I thought about that. I think any time that you start a big journey and is gonna sound weird but it comes out of a place of the Scottish Rite, you know, I mean that this is not where we wanted to be and we were disgusted with our our present situation, and it was overwhelming and was really the first time you had a really long legal powder was the first time that we wrote everything down and added it up and looked at how long it would take the loans that I had were 30 year loans.

The student loans. That's a long time are our kids would've been in college are done with college by by that point in time so that was was overwhelming and and and the weight becomes heavy and then it becomes know I'm not gonna let this bring us down.

Sherry the first time that Ryan came to you and said by fiat. We are getting out of debt. You didn't react well to it.

Were you comfortable with the debt you were him I don't think I really knew the totality until he had that legal pad moment where everything was written down and it hit me like how this is a huge amount of money and if we keep living the way where living, it's not going to get any better it's going to get bigger. That is going to grow instead have to do something. We can't just stay here and I always tell people there's no good time to begin paying off debt. There is only today and that really was the sentiment where we were living right then was today. This is the only day we have, to begin doing this because there's always going to be in a car that breaks down our birthday party or vacation that comes up if you don't start doing something today it's never going to change what you're talking about in your new book is is a subtle and sometimes invisible connection between how we were handling our money in marriage and how we are doing as a couple in our personal relationship in marriage, and I think we tend to look at those as separate and distinct like those two don't fit together our money and in our relationship should not be intermingled. But if to become one in marriage then this is all in the same blunder is so intertwined together that you can't pull it apart even if you try.

And so we really began to look at the different areas where couples struggle me on eight key areas where really difficult to manage money, but that's also difficult to approach intimacy as well. Things like communication and trust and vulnerability and leadership, and even organization that lead to either a happier marriage or not. So harm in this you a phrase I've never heard in my life at the beginning of your book and you will get somebody interested you got me interested unlike financial foreplay what in the world is that it's great that you never heard that phrase yet because we believe it's original.

We've got a working definition in the book and if you wouldn't mind me engaging in some readers theater's financial foreplay simply means husbands and wives investing in smart financial habits and relational capital to clear the way for spicy sex and meaningful togetherness is taking her bank business so you can get down to business, and best conflicts far behind its complete trust vulnerability and connection. When it comes to both our bodies and our budgets results from continued mutual pursuit of improved shared money habits and communication. So you're saying that the emotional and physical intimacy that you guys because you have that when you're in debt, but you're saying that the emotional and physical intimacy today when you're out of debt and you're managing your money more prudently than you were before it, spicy. Here is absolutely right. And if you think about some of those words that are using that definition communication vulnerability trust. Those words are both about money and they're both about intimacy and when you build those transcend one another. So if you build together with money and you communicate well about money you will communicate well about your finances and when you achieve goals together. You are faithful in your finances, then the other spouse trust you even more for us just working together to pay off the debt and accomplishing that together brought us closer together because we had to be closer together to be on the same page together and so that that brought us closer together as a couple to leave us actually found out this isn't just you couples have experienced the same thing. Yes, FMLA, and Brian has some statistics that he can share specifically about the broader base of people and marriages within the United States and their kind of jarring when you read that some 70% of couples thought more about money than household chores, togetherness, sex, snoring, and what's for dinner, combined, combined, and so people are struggling. If you fight about money once or more per week.

Your 30% more likely to get a divorce than than other people and one of my jobs is that I'm on the family law attorney I'm I hope people going through divorce situations and the number one reason that people come into my office has to do with money. Dave and I struggled with that, especially if the beginning that the sex part affect our intimacy in every way. If it did get free right now. When I did realize because I Bender on other people.

Okay so it wasn't necessarily on myself but I like it is true and very generous to where Dave was like we need to get no you need to get a handle on this and I would get defensive doing this for other people. This is stiffening but when I came to realize that the more we talked and I remember asking me not even remember this Dave.

I asked him do you feel like this is disrespectful to you and he said that's it. Sure this makes me feel like you don't care about us shocked by that answer very vulnerable to do you know what to admit that like here is this place where I feel wide open and betrayed. Yet in some ways, and so when it comes to both you know our bodies and our bank accounts.

We are fully on display every mistake, every flaw everything is visible scary thing for a lot of us both to be able to vocalize. Here's how that what you're doing makes me feel as well as will you still love me even though I'm not perfect and I'm a mass what you guys are tapping into, which is so cool, so almost deep and profound.

You probably know this. Let me translate my words what you're tapping into the sex aspect of the human's soul teaches all time. It's like you know God and gives the gift of sex is just body to body gets to the soul.

That's why it's so intimate and so beautiful and and and you need to protect it in the covenant marriage. The interesting thing about money is about soul to Matt. I know this is a pastor because often when ever you mentioned money from the pulpit.

You hear from hear from people when you hear from people because it's a blessing from God. And yet you're tapping into the treasure, which is connected to the soul so you taken those two soul things are God's given us, and you put them together because I know this when when I said that in yet I feel disrespected because here's what's going on. I've told her I lay in bed at night honey and I can't sleep thinking about money and you're going to go give more money to our kids or to a friend. Think about that. You guys have tapped into that and I think it's beautiful that to help couples understand that that this is at the heart. And again, why to get Jesus talk so much about.

Again, this gets our heart, and your showing people what now just as money pulls us apart.

If you get on the same pages can bring you together, not just in the bedroom but in every area.

What great motivation for couples. The sailor pick up this book on start doing what you did to get where you where you got I got ask you this though because when you hear your story, okay.

You paid off hundred $27,000 for and $56.30.

I don't think I got it exactly right but you know every penny. A lot of people are thinking. Do you have a life anymore.

You have fun you enjoy life.

Are you just stingy can enjoy thing is I say that you know what you look at the word frugal. What you said your wife is very thrifty is another additive that people use.

Sometimes the root word of it actually means to enjoy, which is mind blowing. At the same place where we get the word fruit and fruitful until the frugal comes out of that and I think the number one thing that I learned while we were paying off debt was what I really love which is crazy because I love a good bargain and I was chasing all these other things weren't crazy spenders ever. I'm like a clearance warrior again. Now I'm finding out that I was buying things unnecessarily always love which is crazy and what has we whittled down that love. Don't laugh. I love a good class of iced tea. I love my kids. I love my husband. We certainly love our community are small group church and I think as things kind of got stripped away God opened my eyes to leaking a lot. There's a lot of stuff out there that you could have, but in the end, when you lay it all down your neck along for the stuff you're going along for the people and the experiences that you love and so that was an eye-opening moment for sure on the other side of that we've been able to do some fun stuff. We got on vacations you now a lot of those things I think people dream of being able to do with given money away like crazy. So now we have an account that we call the generous account and if I'm in the grocery store and I see a mom struggling higher groceries and then we have an understanding here. Stacy love that interacted. If you set up the account for it. We have a debit card for the generous account for that. And so for classifications of people we love to bless our veterans, young families, pastors and teachers, and buddy if were out for dinner and we see one of those for you better believe that there and get their check picked up.

So it's kind of amazing to be able to do that and not feel that stress or worry of to have enough in there to be able to become very intentional, absolutely certain, but your four years is a long time now. It took us four years to pay off and we had a child that went from an incident to being literate and ready for school.

In that timeframe we always measure how long the journey's been. We had a daughter born right before we started paying off that it's been that long that high since we've been doing that, but the four years we still had a blast in the process of times, but we had a blast in the process more and God bless us with amazing opportunities. While we were paying off debt to there was a season in our marriage where we had moved twice in the course of the year. We still have not sold the house that we owned in our first city. We had bought a new house in the second city with now moved out of the second city to 1/3 city so were renting in the third city flower paying two mortgages in the previous that we were right at the thin edge of the one we could get by on. So there was a lot of Ramen you know a lot of mac & cheese. It was those moments we were not. Here's what we started to do. We would still have the impulses we always had that I need a new suit.

I need this, you know, and we would start to say when we have money again.

The first thing I want to do is by this we do have the money and so and we we were committed. I don't know why this happened.

Early on, but we we have never in our marriage not paid off credit card immediately. Somebody told me that years ago we've stuck with that were not going to do that when I come up take on credit card so we started writing a list down of the things we were in the Bible and we have money again because I knew one of these daisies houses sell or have a windfall will go to the list and will prioritize and Mary and I for months we'd get out the list and I'd say if we had the money today, what would you buy first and weed circle. That's what so then the next month we got the list given so With the money today, what would you buy first I said last month you said it was this and she said yeah.

I would even buy that love it.

That was in a moment for us.

When we saw how much we were doing on impulse that four weeks later, we wouldn't even think about and it changed the way we related to our own desires, and even when we had the money. Again, we would say okay were just can keep the list there and want to wait and that that desire for a period of a month and see if we still have the desire a month later, rather than just doing it impulsively. It was huge for us and I think you can even do that with so-called needs to because one of the things that happen to us what we are paying off debt was our microwave blew up and we just kinda press pause and we said Wait 30 days will run now I know almost every household has a microwave, but I'm pretty sure my grandma survived just fine with outline and so we waited 30 days to see if we could work our way around it and it turns out we decided not to buy one.

We saw one day you know you cannot live with you that years or so years and you have to cook something up for like 10 whole minutes house, use the van.

I popped popcorn on the stovetop which so much better anyway way to work around it. So I think only just pressing ponds and pushing back and saying I know that's what everybody else does it make sense for us. I just have to wonder how many listeners are motivated like Dave's motivated where they go. Okay, so if I get up a bit. My marriage will be better and I'll have spicier romance right. Nothing else is work to try and get them out of that thought despite your romance might be enough to get have some motivation to get a copy of the book, your money, your marriage, and I'd say to get a copy of slang that that Dragon read both of them together. These are great books to help you be thinking about the relationship between your money and your marriage but also to be thinking about strategically.

How do we overcome the mountain that's in front of us. We got copies of both books, your money, your marriage and slaying the debt Dragon in our family life today resource Center. We can go online to order either or both books again. Our website is family life By the way, Sherry has a personal-finance blog.

It's called Queen of a free we got a link to her blog again on our or you can order either of the books or get more information about the blog when you call us at one 800 FL today, so again the website family life phone number 1-800-358-6329 2000 F as in family L as in life, and then the word today, we know for a lot of you the last several months have been months where you've experienced some challenges at home in your relationship and your marriage. Some of those challenges may be related to what we talked about today with your finances in an debt, but there may be other challenges you been facing that have put a strain on your marriage relationship. We talked earlier this week with Jeff and Sarah Walton who shared with us their stories of going through hard times together as a couple and how they face the choice of either isolating or pursuing one another written a book called together through the storms that were making available this week to family life today listers who can help support the ministry with a donation family life today is here because listeners like you have made it available for all of us and were asking you to do the same thing.

Consider making family life today possible for people in your community. People all around the world who are in need of practical biblical help and hope for their marriage and their family. That's what family life today is all about. If you can make a donation today to support the ongoing work of this ministry would love to send you a copy of Jeff and Sarah Walton's book together through the storms is our way of saying thank you for your ongoing support of this ministry. You can donate or you can call one 800 FL today to donate again. The website family life or call one 803 586-329-1800 F as in family L as in life, and then the word today. When you make your donation.

Be sure to request a copy of the book together through the storms is our thank you gift, and we do appreciate you and we hope you'll join us back again tomorrow when Brian and Shirley love story. They started today. Let us know how their marriage is different and how they're handling money with us for that engineer today along with our entire broadcast behalf of our hosts David and Wilson about that next time. Family life, family life today is a production of family life of Little Rock, Arkansas accruing ministry help for today hope for tomorrow

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