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Order of Operations

MoneyWise / Rob West and Steve Moore
The Truth Network Radio
February 3, 2023 5:44 pm

Order of Operations

MoneyWise / Rob West and Steve Moore

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February 3, 2023 5:44 pm

When in doubt, a great piece of advice is, “Do the next right thing.” But since the order in which we do things can mean success or failure, we need to know how to determine what the next right thing is. On today's Faith & Finance Live, Rob West will welcome Chad Clark to remind us about the importance of the order of operations. Then Rob will answer your calls and financial questions. 

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When in doubt, a great piece of advice is do the next right thing, but you need to know what that is.

I am Rob West. There's no shortage of sayings about this. First things first and don't put the cart before the horse come to mind.

The order in which we do things can mean success or failure. I'll talk about that with Chad Clark, 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 decisions. Well, it's always fun and educational to have Chad Clark on the program. He's our executive director here at Faith and Finance, and he always gets things in the right order, at least most of the time. Chad, great to have you. I was going to say, I don't know about always, but by God's grace, sometimes we get it right. Well, I know this topic has been on your mind lately, Chad.

I'm excited to unpack it. And tackling things in the right sequence is what you've been thinking about. And you're going to take us, I guess, back to math class to understand this.

I guess so. And I know that we just lost half of our listeners. But for those of you that are still listening, stick with us here, because I think that you're going to see a lot of value in what we're going to be unpacking here. But to get started, let's just jump right in to a math problem. And so this is a very simple problem for our listeners.

If you're driving in the car, stay focused on the road. But I want you to be paying attention to this equation. If you're listening with somebody else, I want you to tell me the answer to this math problem out loud. I want you to tell that person you're listening to the answer to this problem. So let's jump into this. It's very simple. And stick with me.

So, Rob, I want you to answer this. 4 plus 4 times 2. Let me give that to you again.

4 plus 4 times 2. Okay. All right. So does everybody have their answer? Rob, we're going to unpack this, okay?

I'm ready. 4 plus 4 times 2. All right. So 4 plus 4 is what?

8 times 2 is 16. Okay. You think that's the right answer? Well, that's what I came up with. That's what you came up with.

Why is that? Because we went from left to right to solve the problem. Unfortunately, that is not the right answer.

The answer is actually 12. And that's because we have to follow certain mathematical laws, which, by the way, God designed, and it's beautiful when you unpack kind of these mathematical principles and how they're used throughout nature and everything else. But these mathematical laws, also known as PEMDAS, parentheses, exponents, multiplication, division, addition, and subtraction. Yes, we're taking it way back here to remember these order of operations. I'm starting to twitch. You are. I see it. I see it. But stick with me here. When we don't follow the right order of operations, we get the wrong answer, even though we may be deceived that it's right.

Okay? So we see this on social media a lot. We see these problems pop up and people get into big debates about them. And at the end of the day, really what it comes down to is doing the first things first, is following these set of mathematical rules, these order of operations. And this is so important in our lives spiritually and also financially.

And that's what we want to unpack today. All right. But for those who are still wondering why the answer wasn't 16, because four plus four is in fact eight. And when you multiply that times two, that is in fact 16. Why is that wrong?

We can't leave them behind here. Yeah, no, that's great. So because of the order of operations, we need to do multiplication before addition. And so what we actually need to do is look at four times two, which is eight, and then we go back to add the additional four to get to 12. So multiplication has to come before the addition. And if we don't do it in the proper order, we get the wrong answer.

I love it. And you're exactly right. So if we want to get first things first and get our finances right as it relates to handling money God's way, we've got to take a break here in about 45 seconds.

So tee this up for us. How is this, Chad, going to apply to our money management as God's people? Well, I think one of the things that this does is it helps us to take a step back and ask ourselves, are we getting the right financial outcomes? We tend to focus so much on giving and saving and retirement, paying off debt, lifestyle. All of these things are great, but that's only the addition and subtraction side of the equation. And if we just focus on that part, my concern is that we may end up getting the wrong answer because those are just downstream outcomes of the things that we need to do first, which we're going to dive into in just a bit. I love it.

It's the order of operations. And perhaps by rethinking how you're approaching God's money and the why it's the 90% of the iceberg below the waterline, not the 10%, the how that's above it. We'll unpack that. And that may lead you to some entirely different outcomes as a steward of God's money. Chad Clark, Executive Director of Faith and Finance with us today.

Much more to come just around the corner. Then it's on to your calls at 800-525-7000. Stay with us. We'll be right back. Great to have you with us today on Faith and Finance Live. I'm Rob West. Joining me today, Executive Director here at Faith and Finance, Chad Clark.

And Chad, just before the break, we were doing math equations. That's right. A lot of folks didn't know what they were signing up for today, but you made a really great point. And that is the order of operations is critical. And that has real application to our role as stewards of God's money, right? That's right.

It absolutely does. And so before the break, we were looking at a math problem. And we said that if we do the operations out of order, we can end up with the wrong answer. And that same thing can apply in our lives and specifically in our finances. And so what I want to do now is take a step back and look at how we put the first things first.

What do we need to do before we even begin to look at our finances? And I think we just go to God's word and specifically what Jesus said is the greatest commandment in Matthew 22 37 to 39. It says, Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment.

And the second is like it. Love your neighbor as yourself. And so the first thing that we have to do before we do anything else in our lives, specifically our finances, is we need to make sure that we love God with all of our heart and all of our soul and all of our mind. And this goes back to a principle we talk about a lot on this show, which is Matthew 6 21 for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. And there is nothing we should treasure and love more than God because our love for God ultimately flows into everything else that we do, including our financial decisions. Yeah, and perhaps often, Chad, especially as we read that great commandment, we don't quickly relate that to money. And what we fail to recognize is the heart connection between our money and our relationship with the Lord. Money issues are heart issues at the end of the day. They're a tangible daily expression of walking by faith and trusting and valuing the Lord above everything else. And perhaps we don't see that often, and maybe that's why we don't apply this.

I think that's exactly right. We don't see that this is really a heart condition, and it's really about what we love. And we can grow in our love for God by spending time with him in his word and prayer and fellowship with other believers. And it may look different for each of us, but we ultimately should just be longing for more of him. I love what John Owen says when he says, you know, when he looks at how do we know that we're more in love with God than the things of this world? And he says, when we by faith set our minds on those things which are above where Christ sits at the right hand of God, then the things on earth lose their luster and desirability in comparison. It's this eternal perspective that we're constantly talking about, Rob, is we're setting our eyes on the things above, the things eternal and not on the things temporal. And so when we're growing in our love for God, we no longer desire the things of this world. And so how does this apply to our finances? Well, in every possible way. When we set our heart and our mind and our love on him, it overflows into our financial decisions. Loving him must be our first and primary objective of our lives. And when we do that, our finances may actually look very different than the rest of the world.

That's really helpful, Chad. It reminds me of what John Piper says when he says, the way we're to be rich toward God is to handle money in such a way that it's apparent that God is our treasure and not our money. But our listeners may be hearing this and thinking or saying out loud to themselves, what does this really look like? How does this on a day to day basis, my love for God, how does that actually overflow into the way I practically handle money? What would you say to them? Well, I think that we could probably just look at the second part of the great commandment, which is love your neighbor as yourself. When we love God, I believe that he softens our heart and makes us more aware of the needs of our neighbors and those around us. But before we jump into that, let's define what does neighbor even really mean?

This can be literally the person next door in your community, at your church, or somebody on the other side of the world. But Jesus answers the question of who is my neighbor in Luke 10, the parable of the good Samaritan. If you recall this parable, right, the Samaritan saw a man beaten on the side of the road. And when he saw him, it says he had compassion.

And he went and he helped this person that was in need. And so our love for our neighbor is when we see somebody in need that we have compassion on them. And we love them so much that we go and we see how we can help.

I love this quote by C.S. Lewis when he talks about love for neighbor. He says, Love is not necessarily an affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for that loves person's ultimate good as far as it can be obtained. Our love for them is for their ultimate good. And that's what it means when we love ourselves, right? When we love ourselves, we're looking out for our good to love our neighbor.

We're looking out for the good of our neighbor. I love this because when we put money in its proper context, God is a tool to accomplish God's purposes. It's an invitation into a greater and grander vision that we were created, Chad, to live for something bigger than ourselves. And when we give, there's contentment and satisfaction and joy that, frankly, we just won't find anywhere else. And I think it calibrates our hearts to the Father as we give, because when we physically loosen our grip on God's money, it's demonstrating the trust that we're placing ultimately in him. But we're also able, to your point, to partner with him in meeting the needs of those around us.

I mean, that's exactly right. And I think about 1 John 3.17, when you say that, it says, But if anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him? It goes all the way back to that first principle, which is a love for God. And that overflows into recognizing the needs of our neighbor and helping them. Having a heart postured towards God so that we can then see how we can help our neighbors. And this has been one of my prayers recently, just personally. I feel like so many times I get the blinders on and I'm focused on my needs, my family's needs. And so recently I've just been praying, God, help me to see the needs of others. Help me to love them and to see how I can care for them through the power of your Holy Spirit. Because we know that we need your help to do that, right?

This is not something we can do in and of our own strength. We need God's help to see how we can serve and love our neighbors well. So to bring this full circle, Chad, there's nothing wrong with trying to get out of debt and saving for retirement and building that emergency fund and providing for our families. But when we look at it through the order of operations and we start with loving God and loving our neighbor, perhaps the day to day decisions and handling of God's money will change, right?

Absolutely. I think as we grow closer to God, he's going to start to position our hearts in ways and show us opportunities. Like you said, money is just a tool and it's either going to glorify us and build our kingdom or it's going to glorify him and build his kingdom.

And I think as we just continue to pursue him, he's going to show us how we can use finances to glorify him. I love John Piper's quote where he says, God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him. And I think that's what we're getting at today is that our satisfaction ultimately needs to be found in him and him alone.

There's nothing in this world that's ultimately going to satisfy. We can be thankful for the things that God has given us, our home and our car and our relationships, but those things don't ultimately satisfy when it comes to him. Here in a new year, as you put your financial plans together, perhaps you should start with your love for God and neighbor before you get to those more practical decisions and it might just change everything. Chad, thanks for stopping by. Thank you.

This is Faith and Finance Live. I'm Rob West and we're going to take your questions just around the corner. The number to call, 800-525-7000.

That's 800-525-7000. Stay with us. Much more to come just around the corner. Great to have you with us today on Faith and Finance Live.

I'm Rob West. All right, it's time to take your calls and questions. The calls have been building.

It looks like only three lines were made. If you have a question today, we'd love to hear from you at 800-525-7000. Let's start in Chicago. Hi, Hope. Thanks for being on the broadcast today. Go ahead. Hi, thank you. Thank you for all your advice too. Really appreciate it.

I have a question. So I thought I took a home equity loan like five years ago. I found out this past year and a half that I wasn't doing a line of credit. So knowing how bad the interest rates are, I'm paying way too much per month. And I'm wondering, I'm 62 and a half, if I'm better off taking money out of my IRA, I know I shouldn't, but taking it off and just taking it out and paying this home, this line of credit off.

So I don't have to keep paying 200-250 a month just in interest. Yeah, yeah. So the line is still open. Is that right, Hope?

Yes, it's still open. The balance is 27,000. Okay. And so you're paying interest only currently?

Yes, yeah. Okay. And you said it's 27,000. What is the interest rate today? Interest rate was 7.6. Okay.

Yeah. And that's probably going to continue to head higher. What do you have in your IRA?

How much? Right now I have 700,000. They're annuities, but they're IRA annuities.

Okay. And are you able to take money out without any penalty apart from the taxes? No, I'm going to have to pay taxes.

But I won't have penalties, of course. But I'm wondering if I'm better off paying the taxes while I'm still working, but get that line of credit to zero. Yeah. No, I mean, it's certainly worth thinking about. So you're still working and therefore not pulling anything out of this IRA annuity? No.

No. And they were all inherited. My husband passed away 10 years ago. Oh, I'm sorry. So thank you very much. So they're inherited.

And I don't have any other penalties with that. Okay. Yeah. And are you able to see the investments in this and how has it been doing? With the annuities?

Pretty well. All this past year, no. But yeah. I mean, my goal was to... I didn't care if I didn't make money. I just didn't want to lose anything.

But I've actually been able to make some prior to like a year and a half ago. Yeah. Yeah.

Very good. But what is it down in the last year? Oh, down? Well, the actual balance is not down.

I just didn't make any money out of it. Okay. Okay, great.

So you just haven't lost anything, which is excellent. Yeah. So I think the key here is the trade-off between the potential appreciation in this as the market recovers versus this high interest rate. Do I think we're going to see 7% this year in the stock market? Maybe.

Maybe not. I mean, I think it's going to be single digits either way, but it could be down. I mean, we've got a really strong labor report today that says that this economy, at least from the unemployment standpoint, is holding up pretty well. And inflation is coming down, but we still have a ways to go. What about a recession?

What about long term? How should you think about this? I mean, it is $27,000, and we're talking 7%. So even if you were to pay a couple of grand on this, the question is, could you do better by just realizing the difference in the taxes that you paid, which you're going to have to pay at some point, and go ahead and wipe this out? I think that probably makes sense to me.

I don't think there's a wrong way to go here. I mean, from a tax standpoint, we know the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that has these marginal tax rates where they are is going to run out in 2025, and the likelihood is that taxes are going higher. So once you hit retirement, even though you're making less, tax rates may be higher.

We just don't know, but there's a good case to be made that we're probably at the low end of where tax rates are going to be anytime in the foreseeable future. So if you just feel more comfortable knowing that you're not throwing that money away on interest, wiping it out, I think that could make some sense. Apart from that, do you have the ability through current cash flow to just start reducing this, adding a principal payment over and above the interest each month? Well, that's what I was hoping I could do, but I'm only two months into 2023, but I'm kind of worried I won't be able to do that. Between mortgage and real estate taxes and just regular bills, I mean, I'd like to be able to save too, so when things happen to the car or the house, I'm trying to put a little bit of money aside, I mean very little.

So no, I really don't have it. I mean, I'm wondering if I should even pay like $10,000 down on it to bring it down? Yeah, I think that would be one option is, yeah, go ahead and maybe take half of it and pay that down and maybe try to do the other half out of current cash flow and just really buckle down on your spending plan, try to keep as much in that annuity IRA as possible so it can grow for your future because we want to take a long-term perspective and these higher interest rates are probably temporary and yet that's a pretty significant interest rate and one that you're probably not going to offset with investment results. So I think splitting kind of the difference makes some sense to me at least, Hope, where you might say, let's knock half of this off, cut that interest in half and then you can always next tax year do the same thing or you may surprise yourself if you know that, man, I'm halfway there and now this 27 is all of a sudden 13.5, I think I can do this. Let me find an extra couple of hundred dollars a month and apply to this balance and try to get this going in the right direction. Maybe a combination of the two would get you there but I don't think there's a wrong answer to this. I think at the end of the day, it's what gives you the most peace of mind by either paying off the debt entirely or waiting for the interest rates to come back down and just letting this money continue to grow and compound. There's not a right or wrong. So I'd probably maybe go half on it but at the end of the day, maybe just pray about it and see what the Lord leads you to do.

Yeah, exactly. Thank you so much. Have a wonderful weekend.

All right, you too, Hope. Thanks for checking with us. Well, folks, we've got a lot of ground to cover. We've got two lines open, 800, 525, 7,000. Also, Jerry Boyer is going to stop by today. A lot to ask Jerry about as we got this reading related to the job market today. Really fascinating. Non-farm payrolls increased by over a half a million for January and what was amazing was the estimate they were expecting was only 187,000.

Jobless claims, unemployment fell to 3.4%, the lowest jobless level since May 1969. This economy is holding up. We'll get Jerry to tell us what he makes of it a little later in the broadcast. Plus your questions, 800, 525, 7,000. Much more to come on Faith and Finance Live. Stay with us. Delighted to have you with us today on Faith and Finance Live. I'm Rob West. We're taking your calls and questions.

800, 525, 7,000 is the number to call. We'd love to hear from you with whatever you're thinking about today. By the way, let me mention, if you haven't checked out the FaithFi app, we'd love for you to check it out today. It really is the premier destination if you want to manage money God's way, both in terms of a money management system, the actual tracking and handling of your money to stay on budget throughout the month, but also to access the greatest, or I would say, the leading content, videos, podcasts, articles on biblical finance, and our community, where folks are posting questions all the time.

You can learn more and download it today at All right, back to the phones to Frankfort, Illinois. Hi, Sherry, you're next on the program. Go ahead.

Hi, how are you? Thank you for taking my call. Sure. My husband was involved in a class action suit, and unfortunately, he passed away about 11 months ago, and they told me that they're getting ready to settle this, and I did all the paperwork, and they said that the payment would go to me, but now they're saying that I need a probate attorney. So I know nothing about that, or if that's even if I do need that or not.

Sure. Well, never a bad idea to get the legal counsel, and it would be a probate attorney that would offer legal advice in this situation. Did he pass away, Sherry, with a will, and was there an executor involved? No, no. I have since made a will for my children in case something should happen to me.

Okay, yeah, good. Yeah, so if he had a will, that would have named an executor, and that executor would handle this. In the absence of an executor and a will, I think a probate attorney is what you're going to need to make sure this is done properly.

You may have to file with the probate court that your husband died intestate, which means without a will, and that process can vary state by state, and that's where a probate attorney would help you make sure that this is handled appropriately. Thank you so much. I appreciate your help. You're welcome. If you don't know of someone, Sherry, you could reach out to a certified kingdom advisor there in Frankfort. You'll find them on our website at Click Find a CKA, and just ask for a referral to a godly probate attorney, somebody who can help you navigate this. You could call your church as well and maybe ask for a recommendation.

But yeah, that'll be the professional that will give you some wise counsel here and help you navigate it. I'm so sorry to hear about your husband's passing, and we're delighted that you called today. God bless you. To Georgia. Hey, Shayla, thank you for calling.

Go ahead. Hi, Rob. This is Sheila Tibbetts from Blairsville, Georgia.

I am so excited to hear from you guys and thankful that you're taking my call. My question is, yes, my dad passed away about a year and a half ago with leaving a farm, 90 acres plus. My mom is still living, and of course, that went to her.

We are in the process. She wants to divide it all up amongst six siblings before we so she can not worry about it. So we won't worry about it. We are wondering about inheritance tax. Does she need to put that in her will, the acres that she's going to leave each of us?

Or does she need to or can we do that now? Can we separate that now? What is the value of this?

Sure. What is the value of this property? Oh, goodness, I'm not sure. I know that there is a note remaining and we're going to have the house and six acres probably will stand good for the little note.

It's 285. And so the property, I don't know, it's going to be 90 acres, you know, so it's a lot. Do you think it'd be more than 12 million? Probably not. Some of it, you know, some of the land is not desirable.

Okay. Well, that's the current lifetime exemption to be able to pass two heirs and not have any estate taxes 12.06 million as of this year. Now, that could be done now as a gift and you'd have to each file, she'd have to file a gift return letting the IRS know that that gift that happens now would go against that $12 million life exemption. Or it could be done through the estate. In either case, if it's under that $12 million threshold, there wouldn't be any estate or inheritance tax.

Beyond that, you'd want to make sure that you're handling this most appropriately with regard to capital gains. So, you know, the there was this owned in your in his name only in your dad's name only or was it held jointly with your mom and dad? Jointly in as far as the loan goes, on the deed, it was only in his name, and she had to file for a petition of survivorship. Okay.

Yeah. So the question is, you're probably going to want to connect with an estate attorney just so this is done properly. The question is whether the cost basis was stepped up as of the date of death when it became your mom's asset or not. If it wasn't and we're still operating off of the original cost basis of when they purchased it, then you wouldn't want to make the gift to the heirs because you would miss out on that step up in basis that would happen at the date of death of your mom if it passed through the will. If that's already been done, then capital gains is probably not an issue because it would have already been stepped up when your dad passed away. And, you know, there's not any concern there. It could go ahead and, you know, it could be given now. But I'd get some advice on that.

You'd want to check with the CPA and you'd also want to determine whether any giving was going to be done from this property because you may want to go ahead and, you know, give a portion of it away to a donor advised fund or something like that prior to the sale, again, depending upon the tax situation. So do you all have an estate planning attorney that you've worked with for, you know, the will or anything else? Oh, yes, we do. Okay. So I would just visit with that. Okay.

Very good. I would visit with that person just to make sure before you do all of this, you factor in any of the tax implications. You get the value of this property to make sure that it's done efficiently and effectively because the last thing you'd want to do would be to do something prematurely and have some sort of tax consequence that you weren't expecting. And that's where getting some counsel, especially with a transaction of this size can make some sense. So I'd probably schedule a visit with that attorney and just say, listen, her desire is to give this to, you know, her children. And the question is, can she do that now? Does she need to do it through the will?

What are the tax implications of both? And let him help you navigate that depending upon the current status of things. Does that make sense?

It does. And so I would check with the attorney prior to the CPA. Would that be correct?

Yeah, I think so. I mean, both of them could weigh in on this, but you'd certainly want an estate attorney to weigh in on this and be able to help you navigate it. And generally the estate attorney and the CPA would work together on it. So you'd probably want to put them in touch with each other just to make sure that everything's structured legally the way that it needs to be and that the tax side is considered as well. And that's where these two professionals working in tandem can help you come up with the best plan that's going to be the most efficient from a tax standpoint, but also to honor your mom's wishes in the process. So I'd get them talking with one another as you work through this. Hey, I'm sorry to hear about your dad's passing and grateful that you reached out today, Sheila. Thank you for checking with us.

Eight hundred five two five seven thousand. We've got two lines open. A quick break and then back with more of your financial questions. Also, a Jerry Boyer coming up a little later in the broadcast as well. Much more to come on Faith and Finance Live here on Moody Radio. Hey, by the way, if you'd like to connect with a professional who shares your values, do it at

We'll be right back. Great to have you with us today on Faith and Finance Live. I'm Rob West. Hey, it's Friday, which means Jerry Boyer stops by. Jerry is an economist. He's, well, our resident economist here at Faith and Finance Live. He's the author of The Maker versus The Takers, and he's a regular contributor at World Opinions. Jerry, great to have you with us today.

And always a pleasure to be with you. All right, Jerry, some big news out today. Payrolls increased by five hundred and seventeen thousand in January. That was crushing the estimates of one hundred and eighty seven thousand unemployment down at the lowest level since May 1969. What do you make of this? What I make of it is that that blowout number doesn't really match the normal message that you would think that it would send, which is an improving economy, because we have a situation where we've had labor markets have been very distorted by shutdowns and by retirements and by social benefits that make it easier for people not to work.

So we've had this really odd situation where there's two jobs for every applicant. We've had a labor shortage, which means that we haven't had a lot of new jobs created for the last year or so. So this is essentially a catch up number. So why is it catching up now? Because we have used up our savings. We have increased our credit card debt.

We're back to before pre-pandemic levels. So we're maxing out our credit card. The interest rates are higher.

So that credit card debt is more painful. And so people are feeling like they have to go back to work. But if you average that out, it's still not a good, you know, like over the past year, it's not much job growth at all.

It's still subpar. So usually when you get a lot of jobs created very quickly, that's a sign of a really strong, healthy growing economy. In this case, it's almost the opposite. It's the sign of people losing confidence, getting worried, running out of liquidity and feeling like, OK, I guess I have to go back to work now. Yeah. So the thought that this might signal that, wow, this Fed could engineer this soft landing, getting inflation back to a reasonable range with still a strong job market would typically be an ideal scenario that may not be, in fact, what's playing out here. No. And markets are acting like that's not what's playing out because they sold off in response to this.

So you got to put yourself, you know, I got to put on your Fed head for a second here. How did they think? I mean, we're supposed to think as Christians, right? And Christians think that work is good, that labor is good. We want low unemployment. Work is dignified.

We're made to be productive by a creative God, etc. But if you're in the mindset of the academic economy of Keynes, which is how all of these people at the Fed are trained, if you have an inflation problem, what you think you need to do is to spike unemployment. That's what they think. They think that if prices are going up too much, that means too many of us have jobs. We have too much spending power. We're getting too many raises.

We have too much leverage with our bosses. And so the Fed wants to raise unemployment. It wants labor markets weaker because they think that's the way to fight inflation. So what did markets do today? With this blowout number, the market said, OK, the Fed's going to try to slow the economy down again. And so the Fed funds futures reflected that.

And what happened? Markets went down. The Dow went down a lot. NASDAQ, which is tech, that went down even more. So markets are looking at this through the Fed lens and they're saying, oh, the Fed now thinks it needs to hit the break hard because they have not reached their objective.

They're trying to raise unemployment and it's not working. And so that explains what's going on with markets today. Interesting. All right, Jerry, a quick question that came in by email and then we'll let you go and get to some questions holding on the line.

This one from Paul. He says, since we don't back the U.S. dollar and he buy gold any longer, I took some penalty free money out of my annuity for buying gold and silver. I heard that during the Great Depression, the price of gold went up 75 percent. Just wondering how wise this is. I certainly don't want all my eggs in one basket, so to speak.

What would you say to Paul, Jerry? Yeah, I think that gold diversifies because you're getting away from the world of paper and fiat currencies, etc. Now, I find that there's a problem that there's a whole lot of people who have too little because, you know, the financial industry has tended to look down on gold, not recognizing that inflation was a bigger risk than a lot of them saw. But there are a whole lot of people who think that gold is the you know, the way you're going to get through some coming great crisis. And so they're too much into gold. Gold isn't really an investment. It's really a hedge against debasement. So you invest in stocks and bonds to get a return. You invest a smaller, much smaller portion in gold.

Now, I understand Paul's point. We have some dynamics in our economy. You know, people are retiring. Entitlement programs are kind of out of control. The Fed is trapped. It's got to keep printing money to keep interest rates low.

Otherwise, the deficit blows out more. So I'd be more at the upper range of your gold allocation band, whatever you set with your certified kingdom advisor. You talk to that person and there's a range there. I'd be more towards the top of that range.

But I would certainly not have gold be the major part of an investment portfolio. Yeah, I think that's really wise and well said, Jerry, upper end of the range, but not highly concentrated by any means. All right, my friend, thanks for stopping by with this analysis and always appreciate your biblical insights. God bless you. Have a great weekend.

God bless you, too. All right, Jerry. Boy, you're stopping by today. Always appreciate his counsel.

Quickly to Chattanooga. Bruce, you're next up on the program, sir. Go ahead.

Yes. Thank you, Rob, for what you're doing. And my question is, is responsible to spend a sizable amount of money. And my son wants him, me to pay off his mortgage of his. He'll be debt free. And I've prayed about it, even in Deuteronomy chapter 4 about this and usury.

And I just don't feel like it's responsible because it will cause problems down the road of big spending. Yeah, yeah. You broke up there for a minute, Bruce. Let me just make sure I understood. So you're in retirement. Did you say your father left you a sizable amount? Is that right?

Yes, I said he did. And I can pay off the mortgage easily, but I feel like it's not responsible Christian-wise because it would cause family problems of big time spending. Yeah, yeah. I certainly can appreciate that, Bruce, and I appreciate that discernment. You know, you are the steward. And the most important thing is that your son is growing in his relationship with the Lord, assuming he has one.

Let's pray that he does. And that you're modeling wise financial decision making. Because what we know to be true is, if we read God's word, money is not the root of all evil, but the love of money is. And materialism can get in the way of our relationship with the Lord. Remember it said you cannot serve both God and money.

It was clear that these two things were being put next to each other because if something is going to dethrone God from first place, his rightful position in our lives, the way I read scripture, it's most often going to be money and the things that money can buy. And so if you're discerning that you, with this inheritance that was passed to you, by paying off your son's mortgage, you're not going to encourage the right kind of financial behavior, then I would say absolutely, you follow that discernment of the Holy Spirit. Because the last thing you would want to do is inadvertently encourage him to just fall into the trap of materialism, which is just so pervasive and prevalent around us.

You know, we get into this comparison trap with others, and we see the best version of someone's life on social media, and it can just fuel, if we're not disciplined in understanding our role as stewards, absolutely negative behavior. And so I think what you need to do and love is just say, you know what, son, this is not what I'm sensing is the right thing to do. I love you. I want to be there to support you.

But I don't think coming in and paying off this mortgage is the way to do it. And I think you need to follow that, Bruce, and you don't need to feel bad about that whatsoever. Thank you so much, because you're the only one I've really shared this with, and it's been a big blessing to get to talk to someone with responsible Christian values.

Yeah, well, I appreciate that, Bruce. How might you go back to him? What are you thinking as you communicate this? Because I think that's important that you take the time to sit down with him and express your desire to love and support him unconditionally, but also share your heart around why you're not going to proceed with what he's asking.

Have you thought about what you might say in that conversation? Yeah, I talked to him today, and it's tough and basically about our country being in the problem of raising the spending rate and it being irresponsible spending that's causing it. And I feel like he could control his destiny, but he can't control his family spending and basically his spouse, and that's where the problem really gets blown up.

Yeah, yeah. Well, I think the other thing I might offer is perhaps you look at ways to reinforce the right behaviors. And so if you had the ability to bless him, maybe you say to him, listen, if you want to commit to getting out of debt, I'll match a dollar for every dollar you put toward it. Or if you want to pursue a particular goal and you get halfway there, I'll match you on it. I mean, I think there are other ways if God has blessed you with means, you could reinforce and encourage the right behaviors. But just going in and in one fell swoop, removing the largest expense from their budget, especially if they've not demonstrated restraint and the ability to live within their means that could absolutely accelerate that way beyond what it is right now. And that would be the last thing you'd want to see.

And I think that's what clearly you're sensing at this point. So listen, I want to pray for you here as we wrap up today, as you continue to have this conversation, Father, be with Bruce, just give him wisdom and discernment, as you already have, give him a boldness, but also give him the ability to communicate and love his desire for his son to pursue you and to be a responsible and faithful manager as he leads his family with what God has entrusted to them. I pray that you'd go before him in every conversation and that you draw them together, Father and Son, even closer as a result of it. We ask this in Jesus name. Amen. God bless you, Bruce. Well, folks, so thankful for my team today, Ryan Hansen, Dan Anderson, Tahira Haynes, and Jim Henry.

Faith at Finance Live is a partnership between Moody Radio and FaithFi. Thanks for being with us. Come back and join us on Monday. We'll see you then. Bye-bye.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-03 18:50:42 / 2023-02-03 19:08:00 / 17

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