What's the most published and most read book in history, containing more than 2300 references to money and worth more than its weight in gold? I am Rob West.
I think you already know the answer. It's the Bible, of course. All wisdom is found within its pages, and some verses about earning money may surprise you. We'll do some exploring today, and then it's on to your calls at 800-525-7000.
That's 800-525-7000. This is Faith and Finance Live, biblical wisdom for your financial journey. Well, what does the Bible say about earning? Let's start in the book of John, chapter 14, verse 27, where Jesus says, Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. Peace to you is a common greeting among Jews in the first century A.D., and it's repeated often throughout the New Testament. Jesus means that true peace comes from knowing that we're reconciled with God through faith in Him.
But what, you ask, does it have to do with earning a living? Well, perhaps the most common fear we have in this world is not having enough money. To overcome that fear, Jesus tells us that by focusing on God, everything we need will be added to us.
You see, when we rely on our own power to provide, the world becomes a scary place. So we have to be reminded constantly that God owns everything, that He is our provider, not just of wealth, but even our skills and abilities to acquire it. Deuteronomy 8.18 reads, You shall remember the Lord your God, for it is He who gives you the power to get wealth, that He may confirm His covenant that He swore to your fathers, as it is this day. A covenant is a promise, and God always keeps His promises.
Of course, we have to do our part. Proverbs 12.11 tells us whoever works his land will have plenty of bread, but he who follows worthless pursuits lacks sense. And in Proverbs 14.23, we read, In all toil there is profit, but mere talk tends only to poverty. We also read in Proverbs 12.24, the hand of the diligent will rule, while the slothful will be put to forced labor.
Those verses are pretty straightforward, but sometimes people are confused by Ecclesiastes 5.3, which has a similar message. It reads, For a dream comes with much business, and a fool's voice with many words. A common interpretation is that when we're diligent about our business during the day, we'll have peaceful dreams at night. But idle talk accomplishes nothing, so we must work heartily wherever God calls us, and He'll provide the rest.
Believing that leads to contentment. Of course, we're to use our brains as well as our hands when we work, so we should plan carefully in all we set out to do, whether that's earning, saving, or giving. In Luke 14, Jesus tells us to consider carefully the cost of discipleship, but it's a message we can apply to all areas of life, including how we manage our money. Jesus says, 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?
Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, saying, This man began to build and was not able to finish. And of course, as witnesses for Christ, we must be totally honest in all that we do. Psalm 37 tells us, Better is the little that the righteous has than the abundance of many wicked. Now, in Luke 6, 8, and 9, we find a passage that seems to contradict that, and sometimes confuses people.
There, Jesus tells us, For the sons of this world are more shrewd in dealing with their own generation than the sons of light. And I tell you, make friends for yourselves by means of unrighteous wealth, so that when it fails, they may receive you into the eternal dwellings. Is Jesus telling us to acquire wealth dishonestly?
Absolutely not. He's saying that worldly people are great at using their money for worldly pursuits, and that believers should use their earnings effectively to advance God's kingdom, such as caring for the poor. Our purpose on earth is to honor God in all that we do, and that includes earning money and our giving.
If you're afraid to give more, well, consider Malachi 3.10. It reads, Test me in this, says the Lord Almighty, and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. All right, your calls are next. 800-525-7000.
That's 800-525-7000. I'm Rob West, and this is Faith and Finance Live, biblical wisdom for your financial journey. We'll be right back. I'm so glad you've joined us today on Faith and Finance Live. I'm Rob West, your host, and that's right here on a new year. We have a new name that we think better reflects the heart of the ministry, to start with our faith and allow our values and priorities as believers to inform our financial decisions. So what are you thinking about today financially? We'd love to hear from you. Calls are coming in, but still a few lines open at 800-525-7000.
That's 800-525-7000. In just a moment, we'll be in Naples and Fairfax, Virginia. But before we do that, let me mention here at the start of a new year, it's a great time to get your budget in place. That's right, that spending plan that's going to give every dollar a name and perhaps let you control money rather than it controlling you. If you'd like to get that set up, perhaps consider the tried and true envelope system. Our team over several years with world-class developers has put in place a digital version of Larry Burkett's envelope system. We put it in an app that's right there in the palm of your hand.
You can connect to your institution securely, download your transactions automatically, fund your envelopes out of every paycheck and immediately see at any point during the month what's left in each digital envelope. It's all in the Faith Fi app and you can download it in your app store. Just search for Faith Fi, that's Faith F-I, or visit our brand new website and you can learn all about it.
Plus read our great content and jump into our community. Also listen to broadcast archives of this program, faithfi.com, that's faithfi.com. Alright, we're going to take your calls today, 800-525-7000.
We're going to begin in Fairfax, Virginia. Colleen, you'll be our first caller, go ahead. Hello there, how are you? I'm well, thank you. How are you doing today?
Just fine, sir. My question that I wanted to ask about is that I have some double E bonds that are now matured and can be cashed in, but I'm not interested in cashing them in right now because I wanted to see if there's some other options I can do with them. And since I don't have need of the money right now, I wondered if you could suggest something else with them. Yeah, you will want to redeem those bonds, Colleen, and I understand you want to get a plan before you do that, but when they reach their full maturity, which the double E's do after 30 years, they won't continue to build any interest after that, so there's not any benefit to you leaving that money there. You'll have to pay taxes on those earnings, and so you might as well redeem it. In terms of reinvesting it, give me a sense of where this money fits with perhaps whatever else you have. Do you have an emergency fund that's separate from this, and do you have other investments that are earmarked for retirement?
Yes, I am currently retired right now, but I also have a long-term plan, and I have no need of it immediately, but I didn't want to just cash it and then think there may have been other options I could have done with the money. At Christian, I have been regularly giving my funding to Christian organizations, including Moody, and I just wanted to be wise in how I handled this. Sure, that makes sense. What roughly do you have in these bonds? Well there are 100 of them. I have not added up their value, but three to four thousand maybe?
Okay, three to four thousand dollars? Yes. Okay, very good. And is this money you don't need, based on what you know today anytime soon, correct? Yes, as much as I know.
I'm in my own home, and as I said, I have retired, and my husband and I had been getting a bond every payday in the early days, and then we started investing it better. So my husband is gone now, and I'm a widow, and so that's about the gist of it. But you can ask me any question, and I'll be glad to respond. No, that's very helpful. I appreciate that.
I'm sorry to hear about your husband's passing. One option would be, Colleen, for you to put these into what are called I bonds. So have you heard us referring to the inflation bonds on this broadcast? I have a little bit, but I'm afraid I don't understand the, well, yes, go ahead and explain it to me.
Sure, yeah, this could be a good option. Basically, the I stands for inflation. These are issued by the U.S. Treasury, and they're backed by the full faith and credit of the United States government. They're intended to protect the value of your cash from inflation, which puts them at a fairly attractive interest rate right now, because inflation is at a four decade high, and so it's caused investors to be more interested in these very low risk, but higher yielding investments. The current rate on I bonds is 6.89%, and that's good through April of 2023 of this year. So if you were to purchase the full 3,000 or 4,000, whatever you have worth of I bonds, and by the way, you're able to put in as an individual up to 10,000 in these bonds per year, you would get that for a full six months. That's 6.89%, and then it would adjust probably down to the new rate that will come out. We'll know it as of May of this year, but it's pegged to CPI, the consumer price index, and with inflation continuing to be at an elevated level, I suspect the rate that we'll get for that second six month period will still be fairly attractive north of 4%. The nice part is that whether it's 6.89 or somewhere between 4 and 6.89, that's a very attractive rate of return given that there's almost zero risk.
I mean, this is backed by the US government. You are required to leave it there for at least 12 months, so you would not be able to get it back for 12 months, and then you would be able to redeem that money at that point. The interest would be credited if you redeemed it in less than five years. These are 20-year bonds, and they renew for an additional 10, so a total of 30 years like your EEs, but you can pull them out any time after a year. If you do that between one and five years, you'll pay a small penalty worth three months' worth of interest, so they'll credit the total amount of interest you would have received as you held them, and then they'll just subtract the prior three months' worth as a small penalty, and then that would be taxable at that point. But it's a great rate of return, much better than you would have been getting on these EEs, and it has zero risk.
So that would be one option. The other option is you could pull these out, and if you don't want to take any risk with this money, you could look at banking alternatives like a high-yield savings account. You could get probably about 3.5% right now in a high-yield savings account, FDIC insured with an online bank and have complete liquidity. If you wanted to lock it up for a year, you could probably get 4.25% somewhere around there with a one-year CD.
Which one sounds like could be the best option for you? I think that the inflation sounds best to me. Great, so the best way, are these EEs paper bonds or electronic? They are paper bonds. Okay, so if you go to the Treasury's website, treasurydirect.gov, you can get instructions on how you can convert these to electronic bonds. And once you do, that would cause you to set up an account at Treasury Direct so that once they're redeemed, it could be deposited to your account, and then you could just purchase the I bonds, which are going to be electronic also.
There's not an option for paper bonds any longer. So all of the details, including the instructions you'll need to both redeem and purchase the new bonds, will be again at treasurydirect.gov. We can help you further, Colleen, along the way. Don't hesitate to let us know. Thank you so much for calling today. May God bless you. Folks, we're taking your calls today on anything financial, applying the wisdom from God's Word found in the Bible to your financial decisions and choices. So what's on your mind?
Give us a call, 800-525-7000. This is Faith and Finance Live. I'm Rob West, and we'll be right back. Stay with us. Delighted to have you with us today on Faith and Finance Live.
I'm Rob West, your host, taking your calls and questions, 800-525-7000. You know, as we look to God's Word, the parable of the sower is fascinating because here's what we see in Mark 4. We see that if something is going to choke out the Word of God from bearing a thirty, sixty, hundredfold return in our lives, two out of the three reasons Jesus explains are related to money.
Listen to this. Mark 4, it says, Still others, like seed sown among thorns, hear the word, but they, listen to these three things, the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth, and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful. Well, the way I read this, perhaps two or two and a half out of the three reasons have to do with the things that money can buy, the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth, the desires for other things. If something's going to dethrone God from first position, it's many times going to be money and the things that money can buy.
Well, how do we counteract that? How do we get past the comparison trap and falling into pursuing money as an end rather than a means to an end, a tool to accomplish God's purposes? Well, in my experience, the way to be free of the byproducts of wealth that can cause fear and confusion and anxiety is generosity. It causes the grip of money over our lives to be loosened as we hold it loosely, recognizing God's ownership and his provision, because when we give it away, we're saying, God, I trust you for more. I trust you that you're going to continue to provide for me. And therefore, as an act of worship, I can give.
There's something that happens when we give that causes that grip of money to begin to loosen away from our lives. Try it. See what God does in your life.
I hope that's an encouragement to you. All right. All the lines are full. Back to the phones.
We go to Naples, Florida. Sylvester, thank you for calling. Go ahead.
Hey, hi. Thank you for taking my call. I got a question regarding my term life insurance policy. A long time ago, I purchased 20 years, 20 years policy. And six months ago, I also purchased another term life policy because I'm getting 50.
I'm 50 years old, so I'm getting older. So I was thinking, oh, maybe I could get another one, 10 years. And I canceled the first one, which I was thinking because when I canceled the first policy, I paid $125 a month for it. And after 15 years, I can cancel that and get 60% of the money I invest. So I was just wondering, should I cancel that or just keep going until I reach the 20 years and get the whole thing back instead of losing some money?
Yes. And what is the face value, excuse me, the death benefit of that policy? This one is $250,000. That's the disability and the term life insurance plus disability with it. It's $250,000 policy. Okay. And the $125 that you referred to that you're paying each month, that's on top of the death benefit premium just for the return of premium option, or is that the whole premium? That's the whole thing.
It's $125 a month. Okay. All right. Very good. Yeah. And how long have you had it?
I think I'm already in year 17 right now. And like I said, six months ago, I purchased like the cheaper policy, which I paid $30 a month. And for $500,000 policy, it's only $30 a month.
The first one I paid $125. So I was just wondering if, you know, keep going with both of them or... Well, I'm not generally not a big fan, Sylvester, of the return of premium life insurance just because they're more expensive than conventional term policies. And my experience is you can get a better return by investing the difference between the conventional term policy without a return of premium rider and the higher premium amount that you'll pay for the return of premium. If you were to take that difference and put it into a good high quality mutual fund, you'll typically come out better.
Now, because you're only three years away from getting it all back, this really just becomes a math equation. So you could look at what a comparable policy might be. It might even be broken out in terms of what is the extra amount that you're paying toward the return of premium.
It doesn't sound like it's a whole lot. And probably the benefit of you waiting three more years and getting 100% of that premium back is going to make some sense. So I'd probably stick with it. At that point, I would replace it if you still need life insurance with a conventional policy. Make sure that you get that in force well ahead of that policy, you know, running out of its term because it'll get very expensive at that point. And you just want to make sure you have another policy in force.
OK? Right, right. That's what I did. That's why I got just the other one for $30 a month for finally $1,000. So I guess this one I'm just going to treat it like a like a savings account. Just keep going until it's finished and to get the money back.
All right. Yeah, that's right. I think that makes some sense given how close you are to that. And then you can get all of those premiums back and turn around and invest that. Well, is the $500,000 that you have, is that enough? You know, I generally recommend during your working years that you have 10 to 12 times your income. So, you know, if you're making $50,000 a year, you know, that'd be $500,000 to $600,000. If you're making $80,000 a year, you'd need, you know, more like, you know, $1,000,000. What are you, do you think you're insured properly? Yeah, I'm close to $80,000. So maybe actually I should do a little bit of an upgrade. Yeah, because the idea would be if something were to happen to you and you're married or you have dependents, you know, they would want to be able to take that and either pay off the house and, you know, and then convert the rest to an income stream that at least during the rest of what would be your working years, they can replace the income that you, you know, that has been lost through your death and, you know, not have any kind of hardship placed on them.
So you may want to take a look at that, especially since term insurance is so inexpensive, perhaps at the same time that this policy lapses and you get the premium back, maybe you replace it with an additional policy on top of the half a million dollars that you got recently. Hopefully that helps you. And Sylvester, we appreciate you checking in with us today.
Thanks very much. All right, much more to come just around the corner. We're going to talk about the tithe. Is it for today or is it an Old Testament thing? Margaret wants to know about that. Kim's asking about whether it's ever appropriate for a Christian to file bankruptcy. And what about saving for the future?
How should you start if perhaps you're catching up in your mid-fifties? That and much more on Faith and Finance Live just around the corner. The number to call with a few lines open, 800-525-7000. By the way, if you haven't checked out our brand new website, I'd love for you to check it out today. You'll find it at faithfi.com.
That's faithfi.com. We'll be right back. So delighted you're joining us today on Faith and Finance Live. I'm Rob West. We're taking your calls and questions today on anything financial. Let's head right back to the phones. Korta Lane, Margaret, thank you for calling. Go right ahead.
Hello. I'm just asking some questions. A Bible question, really. I'm asking about what the Christian viewpoint is on tithing. I've been told by someone that they just believe it's from the Old Testament belief that was to pay, you know, the Levites, whoever, so that they, because they didn't have an income, so it was to give them money to live by. My understanding is we still have Bible beliefs that we should continue because everything we have is God's money and we should continue to give him that 10 percent just to show that it is his and we want to return something to him. We give money to some mission projects, to some missionaries that we have overseas that we know of to help them. Anyway, I just like some biblical, you know, backing for today for tithing. Yeah.
Well, I appreciate the question, Margaret, very much. There is a lot of confusion about tithing. If you go to most churches today, you'll find that tithing or the idea of giving a tenth, which is what tithe means of your income, is what most pastors preach, although I will say among Bible-believing Christians and pastors, there are differing positions on whether tithing is for today. Is it an Old Testament concept under the law of Moses?
Absolutely. In fact, while, as I said, the tithe means 10 percent, there were actually three tithes in the Old Testament. There was one for the Levites, there was one for the temple and one for the poor, which happened every three years. So if you add it up and you tithe, you look at the tithe from the Old Testament, it was actually 23 and a third percent every single year.
And that was just the beginning. Then they would make offerings for the first fruits at the beginning of their harvest, and then they'd make an offering at the Feast of Weeks in proportion to the size of their harvest. There was a whole host of other giving that was done. Now, because the Old Testament giving laws went far beyond 10 percent, what's interesting is that when Jesus enters the scene, he takes giving to an even higher level, just as he did with most things. He showed a different way of giving, what I might call whole life generosity, by giving ultimately his life as the ultimate sacrifice. Now, when he talked about money, he taught us that we should give as we've been blessed in Luke 638. He said, To whom much has been given, much is required. In Luke 1248, he commended the poor widow, who gave her last two copper coins. She gave out of her poverty.
And then, of course, we remember the story of the rich young ruler, where he asked him to give away all of his wealth. So, you know, I think this confusion is demonstrated often in our practice, but what we can be sure of is that, to your point, those of us who have seen what Christ did for us on the cross should recognize that we should be givers. Because when we acknowledge that Christ is the, or that God is the owner of everything, as it says in the Bible, Psalm 24, the earth is the Lord's and everything in it, he owns the cattle on a thousand hills, then it's all his, and he's the ultimate giver, right?
He gave us his son. So I like to say we're most like him when we're giving, because we were created in his image. It's also a demonstration of our trust, because when we give, it's saying to the Lord, I know you're my provider, and I don't have to hold everything with a clenched fist, because when I give it away, I trust that you're going to continue to provide for me. It's also something we should do cheerfully, the Bible says, as an act of worship. So where do you come down on it as believers? Well, I like to look at the tithe, like my friend Randy Alcorn talks about, as the training wheels of giving.
It's the starting point, it's not the ending point. We say, yes, the local church is God's plan A, and so we need to start there, and using the principle, the Old Testament principle of the tithe, a tenth, systematically off of our increase, which is whatever comes our way, which is all a gracious gift from God, let's return a tenth to him systematically as a way to demonstrate that we want to give the first and the best to him. But then we should give beyond that, whether that's ratcheting up that ten percent and a progressive giving plan, maybe one percent in a year, or giving beyond that sacrificially to people in need and ministries doing work in the name of Jesus in your community and around the world.
That's an opportunity as well. And what we find is, is that as we give, the joy that follows, Margaret, is something that's just incredible. And over time, because it's so incredible, we want to find ways to reorient our lives so that we can give even more, because we want to be participating in God's activity. But as to the amount, I don't think God wants us to be legalistic about it.
It's not about checking a box. It's about us being on our knees, saying, Lord, everything I have is a gracious gift from you. I trust you as my provider. I want to honor you.
I realize it's a privilege to be partner with you where you're at work. And so I want to know, what is your heart for me as to how much I should keep and how much I should give? And then I think you and your husband need to work through that together. At the end of the day, God wants your hearts and he wants unity in your marriage, because again, he doesn't need our money. And so this is really about you all coming together to develop a vision for your giving that's consistent with scripture, but ultimately reflects what you believe the Lord would have you to do. Now, I've thrown a lot at you, so give me your thoughts.
Well, my thoughts are in, I'm in a unique situation. My husband and I mainly just get Social Security right now. And we have plenty enough. We have, and I have a little bit of income from retirement. And God is blessing us beyond, you know, I mean, we are not by far wealthy, that's for sure. But we have, like I said, given to some, we've gone as missionaries to certain places, and now we are sending money to help support those people still. Some of them are teachers who don't even get any salary.
They're not getting paid. So we try to fill in some of that. My husband now has chosen we are getting more Social Security. So like he's taking money and investing it. And I think he's investing it wisely. He's with a Christian investor, person, whatever. And, you know, of course, that's the stock market.
It's up and down. But he it's, it's very wisely invested, but I still feel his attitude has been, he's told some of the other day, well, I don't pay tithe anymore, which really bothers me. And that's why I asked the question. He has some he has some issues with our local church, we have belong to he didn't like, I don't think he has any foundation for it. But he's like, they just want money. And so I'm trying to step very carefully between that and still, you know, supporting mission and things that support Christianity and God's, you know, in the in the world.
Yes. Well, I certainly appreciate all that you just said there. And I think, again, at the end of the day, God wants our hearts. He's always been about our hearts. He wants unity in your marriage.
And he wants what he wants something for you, not from you. And I think when you look at the New Testament, in particular, what's going to jump off the pages, not even any ideas around saving, it's this idea that we should be generous, you know, yes, we should manage God's resources well as stewards. But what's even bigger than that, all through the Bible, and certainly in the New Testament is that we're to be generous sowers. And, you know, as we have been blessed, which clearly you say you have, and we all have, then we're to give as a response to that as an act of worship.
And there's incredible joy that follows. And so I would just perhaps ask your husband if you all can pray about it for a couple of weeks and perhaps elevate your vision around your giving. Hang on the line. We'll talk a bit more off the air. We'll be right back. Faith and Finance Live, I'm Rob West. We're taking your calls and questions today.
I had a chance to follow up with Margaret off the air a bit, as we continue to talk about giving in marriage. You know, she's a little more comfortable giving what they have back to the Lord. He's feeling like maybe they're a little behind in their long term savings now that they're in their 70s.
And even though they're living within their means, they don't have a whole lot else. And he wants to invest more of what they have. And I think the opportunity there is to live in the tension. You know, God does something as we wrestle through things together where we talk it through and we say, Lord, we want to trust you, but you know, one of us is a little more ready to give and another is wanting to hold a little more tightly.
How can you help us come together in unity to make this decision? I love what my friend Bob Doll says in a recent article we just published on our website with regard to giving as a married couple. He said, leave room for both of you to be reflected in your giving plan. Once you pray through and decide on an amount, there's a portion that you direct, a portion that your spouse directs, and then a portion that you direct together. You know, it doesn't have to be a one size fits all approach. The key is God wants our hearts, he wants unity, and ultimately he wants us to trust him.
And the process of working through that trust is a process where he can go to work in each of our lives and allow us to grow in the process. I hope that's an encouragement to you today. All right, let's head back to the phones. Kim is in Minnesota. And Kim, I understand you want to talk about bankruptcy. How can I help you?
Hi. Yeah, I appreciate the previous caller's question. Being on a fixed income is really difficult. My husband is on RSDI and our disabled adult son is on SSI. And I am a wage earner.
I'm grateful that I get to be paid to take care of him. However, I tried to take another job and it ended up being a scam. And now I am like $30,000 in debt. When is it okay for us to ever file bankruptcy? I mean, I always believe, I know the scripture that keeps running through my head is, Oh, no, man, anything but to love them. And so this is just really, I just don't know what to do.
Yeah. Well, I don't think it's unbiblical to file for bankruptcy. You won't see the word bankruptcy in the Bible. It's a modern legal term we've created, unless you're doing it to avoid paying your debts. But sometimes bankruptcy is our only option, especially in the business world where creditors can force us into it. It should absolutely be a last resort. And I would say if you do file, and I've seen many cases of this, you can still make every effort to repay your creditors, even after the debts are erased by the court.
It's not going to be easy. They may say, Well, we've charged it off or, you know, we've been reimbursed through insurance, or, you know, we can't even collect payment on that. But you can do everything you can to try to make, you know, restitution there and pay back everything you owe because in addition to the verse you would had cited, I would also, you know, reference Psalm 37 21, the wicked borrows, but does not pay back.
And so clearly, we should have an absolute commitment to repayment. But that doesn't really apply to whether or not we're forced into bankruptcy. So I think the key here is what has God entrusted to you, perhaps, you know, for whatever challenges and mistakes you've made in the past, we all have them. You know, you've been taken advantage of, I certainly understand that you need to take what God has provided for you and move forward in a way that makes sense. And if you need legal protection along the way through bankruptcy, you may be forced into a position to do that.
If you can avoid it, I would not only because it's just added expense, but also the fallout with your credit report. But I think the key right now is to not run from your creditors, but run to them, let them know the situation that you're in, communicate clearly, have a budget that you can show just how limited the resources are, and then move forward in a way that's wise where you're doing the very best you can to live within your means and set up when you're able to a debt repayment plan that even if it's going to take a long, long time to do, you're just going to, you know, honor that commitment that you've made to try to repay systematically as you're able. And that's all you can do is as you're able. So it's not so much for me as, you know, whether or not bankruptcy is biblical or unbiblical as it is, how can I be faithful with what I have?
And how can I, to the best of my ability, honor my commitments and obligations moving forward? In some cases, the creditors will be willing to work with you. In some cases, they won't. And that's where bankruptcy often comes in. Does that make sense?
Yeah, it does make sense. I'm also being sued by people that I didn't buy their services or that I didn't, you know, because of the identity theft. So it's not all my debt.
So yes. Well, and that part is a challenge. And obviously, if it's not your debt, you didn't incur it and it was incurred fraudulently, then that's an entirely different situation. That's not an obligation or a commitment you made. Do you have some representation, somebody who's helping you navigate this? Could your church perhaps be a local, you know, a resource here in this challenging time you guys find yourselves in? No. Okay. All right. Well, I'm going to pray that the Lord gives you somebody that will come alongside you, even unexpected and miraculously, that would be able to help you provide some counsel here, maybe even help you financially. We'll certainly put an appeal out to our Money Wise and Faith and Finance community just to say, if you feel a burden to help Kim in this situation, let us know.
We'd be happy to help make that happen. But Kim, can I pray for you as we ask the Lord to give you some wisdom here? Yeah, thank you. All right.
Let me do that. Father, I lift Kim and her husband up to you. Lord, we ask first as the great physician that you'd bring healing to her husband's body, we just thank you for the provision you've given. Lord, in the midst of this fraud that has occurred and the harm that's been caused to this family, I pray that you would just miraculously provide.
Thank you that you are our provider and we can trust you. And we ask that you would just bring that provision, even unexpectedly. And you've said that, Lord, if you're going to care for the birds of the air, why would you not care for us as your children? And so we claim that today and just ask that you would walk alongside them, that where you want to reveal yourself to them and teach them and allow them to grow through this process, that that would happen.
But that there would also be wisdom that you would bring to Kim as she tries to navigate this situation financially. So we trust you in this, Lord. We leave it in your hands. We ask all this in Jesus' name. Amen. Kim, thank you for calling today. Keep us posted on that situation. Let's head to Florida. Dawn, you're next on the program. Go ahead.
Hi, thank you for taking my call. I'd like some advice or what you would recommend for someone who's in the mid 50s, owns nothing, so no property, owns nothing, zero, and but also is about to pay off credit cards and own nothing. So then and is working. So then we'll have a paycheck coming in on a biweekly basis where I could put my money into to try to save it or earn as much as I can. I've heard you talk about the high yield savings, the I-bonds, the CDs. For someone in that kind of situation where you're going to have about a thousand dollars every two weeks that you can put into something, what would you recommend?
Yeah. Do you all have an emergency fund yet? I have $5,000.
Yeah, that's it. That's my three to six months. OK. What are you living on per month? What are your expenses roughly on a monthly basis? After once these credit cards get paid off. I mean, honestly, you're looking at about $800 a week.
I'm fortunate enough to live where I don't have to pay any rent. So I mean, you're talking my basics are going to be gas and food and a phone bill. OK. All right. Very good.
Yeah. So you've obviously got quite a bit of surplus. I'd probably I mean, you're going to obviously planning to continue to work for the foreseeable future. You know, once you have that emergency funds established, I'd be looking at other short term needs.
Are you going to need to replace a car at some point? Let's try to save for that. But beyond that, I would be looking to just pile this money into a Roth IRA and start investing it so you can begin to build something for the future. I mean, you'd be doing it at a time where the market is down quite a bit. And even though it could go down a bit further, we're not looking at a year or two. We're looking out 20 years down the road.
And if you systematically invest as much as you're able to know, you're going to bump into a ceiling here. I didn't hear. Are you are you married, Dawn?
Yes, I am married. Okay, yeah. So you each could put in $7500 this year, over 50 years of age into a Roth IRA. And so that would allow you to put in 15,000 a year.
If you get to the max on those two Roths, then beyond that, you could look to fund, you know, an additional account, you don't have a retirement plan available at work. Is that right? They do have one. I have not enrolled in it because for the last couple I'm recently saved and I've turned my whole life around.
And for the last couple years, I have been diligently paying off everything that I owe. So I have not signed up for that because this was my main priority. Got it. And do they offer any matching do you know in that plan? They do.
I don't understand it really well. I believe it's up to 6% is what they had told me. Oh, wow.
Okay. So let me back up then I before I do the Roth IRA, I'd fully max that out, because that's free money. If they're going to match up to 6%, you're going to double your money, you certainly won't find that anywhere else. So I would immediately enroll in that retirement plan and start funding that systematically every month up to the max, which is going to be up to 23,500 for you this year, which could take 100% of what you have available. If you have a couple of thousand a month, and then you're going to get the employer portion on top of that. So that's going to allow you to put away quite a bit of money every year. And then inside that 401k, if that's what it is, or 403b, there's going to be investment options like a menu of investments to choose from. And you can get some help from, you know, the plan administrator on that, or you could choose one of the lifecycle funds, which uses your projected retirement date to determine how to do the mix of stocks and bonds so you're not too aggressive.
But that would be my next step Dawn, as you've got everything paid off, you've got quite a bit of margin every month, just start being really diligent and get that salary deferral going into your retirement plan. Okay? Thank you. Thank you so much. Okay. All right. God bless you. Thanks for calling today. Well, that's going to do it for us. I want to say thank you to my team today. Tahira Haynes, Amy Rios, Gabby T, and Jim Henry.
Couldn't do it without them. This program, Faith and Finance Live, is a partnership between Moody Radio and Faith Five. Check us out online at faithfive.com and come back and join us tomorrow. We'll see you then. Bye-bye.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-01-06 12:18:52 / 2023-01-06 12:35:54 / 17