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May 17, 2020 2:00 am
Proverbs 22:7 says, “The rich rule over the poor and the borrower is slave to the lender”. Of course, most of us need loans, and there are good loans, but unnecessary debt makes us slaves to the lender. This week, Bernie and Mike discuss Biblical principles of debt and offer practical advice on debt management.
From the Salvation Army you're listening to wonderful words of life. Welcome back everybody and welcome Cheryl Gillam, our newest host with the most were glad that you're here. Thanks Bernie.
The Salvation Army is sheltering in place all over the country as well as you know on the front lines of trying to provide human need and I don't know how it's been for you Cheryl, but it's been kinda crazy working from home for me yeah at our house is a little tiny and that I have a 17-year-old trying to do digital learning and so trying to find a good space to work and not feel like your anchor and claustrophobic and I need to get out the times I've gone out to the deck and worked in just trying to get out and get some fresh air, but it's been challenging, but it's something good to be around your family and to be able to interact in ways that for a long time. We haven't been able to/or we live and work in the Atlanta Georgia area in the southern part of United States and one of the interesting things about Atlanta for the listeners that may not know is we have a lot of pollen in the air from the trees and such. So it's a terrible time to be going through a pandemic where everybody's nervous about conditions like cold type symptoms in this pollen you. You don't have to be allergic to it, but you'll come out in the morning in your car will be a lack of attentive green because there's so much dust on the palm and you can cough or sneeze and everybody around his nervous working to get through this. Yeah I am convinced that God is very much aware of what's going on in the world and he has not forgotten us. He will not forsake us.
But I also believe that we need to be wise in our interactions and remain socially distant and just wait to's wait this out. It's gonna be okay and I should say to that, in our hearts go out to all of the people who are have been caught up in a either a furlough or a termination or layoff of some sort. The you two are not alone. There are millions of people joining the unemployment lines and our country is doing its level best to keep up with that and we want to know if there is something that you need or you're having trouble meeting or findings of a resource that you you need in your household. Please reach out to your local Salvation Army. There are people there willing and waiting to serve. Now we've been talking with Mike Harris and in this episode he and I began to discuss debt, but it's a topic that brings a lot of stress and baggage. For many, so to be clear, we aren't 100% anti-debt.
Mike mentioned specifically in this episode that there are some positive debts but Cheryl for you when it comes to stewardship. What are your thoughts on that.
I also think that I'm not anti-debt and we need debt to build up our credit right and so there are some positive things in regard to that when you want to buy some of those bigger ticket items like vehicle and in the house and in all that but I do feel like we need to use wisdom concerning our dad. I don't think God punishes us for having debt.
There are some consequences when were unwise in our spending and we we are spending is definitely more than what we bring in, or things to that that nature, but I do. I do think that debt can hold us captive and so in regards to that II do think we need wisdom mentioned in the beginning it can be overwhelming and there are some positive consumer type debts like owning a home which should of course afford you shelter and then offer some significant tax breaks to you as well. If you're someone who is going to be itemizing owning a car which get you around to and from you. Hopefully your employment through your employer those might cost more than you have on hand.
That would be considered a positive investment in my mind. So if you're out there and you have debt don't fear but listen to what Mike has to say. Throughout the episode because there are some really good nuggets of wisdom absolutely sent today.
Mike Harris is to share some thoughts and advice on how to live within your means and avoid unnecessary stress from unnecessary welcome back everybody to this week's series on financial things from our guests perspective Mike. It's great to have you back right to be back. Thank you.
I hope that you're finding some strength in sharing these ideas and that really just kind of working through what God has brought you to judgment interesting because it's it's help me to formulate some my folks and ideas and uneven my attitudes in a fleet to bring big biblical principles into these particular subject social journey for me opening right well there's a Scripture in Proverbs 22 that eludes this thought that where there is debt there is slavery. Proverbs 22 seven says the rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is the slave to the lender. Mike help me understand that idea as I as I think about about debt to motherhood. People say that debt is soon. I don't know that I can goof description and be that that specific account tell you the Scripture hit basically says that but if you are in debts to somebody and they have a hold on you and him and really nobody should have a hold on those except Jesus Christ you know so so so although I won't categorically say that sin is that that is sin. I can certainly see where it allows something of the world to have a piece of us. You now the question comes up in this conversation before people show debt to the bank for my house about that for my, what is different I think because you got an ass over here that offsets the debt over their soap. So technically could argue, not debt simply way of buying something so so I don't see that is the issue. What I'm saying is, the issue is things like excessive credit card bills with build up this mountain of debt on the credit God and then you pay off.
You know the amount you could the minimum amount every month you just incur greater debt because interest rates are astronomical penalties that come with it. It's it's it's crazy and that's where you start to go down the slippery slope of debts and that's where suddenly somebody has a hold on you and now I am glad to say bunny I've never been in that kind of debt.
I haven't, but I've seen with people have been in that kind of debt and it dominates their life's when the phone rings the fifth, the null, dual they won't answer it and that's what happens when when debt comes and if I look at that as sin, perhaps, let that's what you therefore see it because it's tough to dominate your life and it takes two to a place that you should be going. I am sure it's similar around the world, but here in the United States as a college student, you don't have really any credit to speak of. You are immediately in debt because you're having to pay off school or pay the school for what they are owed and they set up these loans with you, which thankfully are usually at a lower percentage rate but over time, then you discover that you want to buy something while you're in school and maybe you don't have the cash flow and you begin to develop your credit score by getting a modest credit card and starting to put things on it and then one payment in the minimum form leads to a greater payment and a minimum form because of the idea of compound interest and for our listeners.
I think the thing that I'd love for them to hear the most is how we might be able to tackle some of these things that we get ourselves into a particular that I agree with you Mike.
Owning a home is not really considered bad debt that that that would be good. It's debts but it's it's a debt that's reasonable because it it leads to an acceptable election. I just in a car is a means to an end because you need to get to your job and we live in such a commuter society, particularly here in the states as opposed to maybe the small town that you grew up in England Mike where you could walk to church and walk to your job, or perhaps you live in the country that those things that my little imagination of England, but for our listeners.
Help me understand how can we navigate some of these traps that that the world gets us into. The first thing is is to establish a budget amendment in the state in Asia for myself fully into the strap as well, me, but went back in the day when I'm with this bank account. You wait every month for the statement to come in the mail.
You'd sit down and reconcile your bank account. You look at the outstanding checks the outstanding deposits and eventually you know how much money you have, was now good lap. I was waiting for their nap so so I because of that I don't work with a rigid budget as much as I used to live a budget in my mind, and it would treat me well. However, if I think about my children. My bundle to 20 months, and likely team was a Christian 16 different starting point to me that starting point is over how much money do I have in the bank will what you have in the bank doesn't really tell you what you have. You could've debt over here and so what were saying is you people living on this this this mindset that what's in the bank is spendable money, but if you owe money. It's no longer spendable.
I think you need to sit down and and and create a budget might be belief is you live off 70% of your drink of your income trying live off 70% tent 10% goes to go 10%.
I think you should put away for savings for long-term savings 10% maybe for short-term savings if you're in debt. Maybe the second 10% is additional money to pay off existing existing debt per think I think basically working on the budget is the key so that way you know what's coming in, and if we can manage what's going out there are some great Christian financial planners and people that teach living within your means that I think of Dave Ramsey is one of them were not looking for any endorsements but I know he's got some great resources out there both on on the Internet and in the form of books and there's podcasts and all other kinds of things that you can listen to when you're not listening to wonderful words of life.
Of course, but Mike, I'm grateful for the idea that you say live within a budget or use a budget to help you live within your means, that were talking, of course, after taxes. You, your net X going to have to pay those whom you're obligated to pay it in the United States. You know you you are immediately obligated to about a 15% tax bracket until you start making more money and it's important for listeners to understand the idea you said it God gets 10% note. That's it.
Something that we practice as stewards, but that is also a faith thing because it immediately takes away from what you perceive as the money you have available to spend too trusting the Lord with that money.
As we've Artie said in the series. You cannot out give God.
One of you learn to trust payment. The resources that you already have come back and join us next week to hear more about Mike's ideas on all things finances and we pray that your hearing something that is a blessing to you and bless you and the Salvation Army's mission doing the most good means helping people with material and spiritual needs.
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