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Faffy October 16, 2012 at 6:17 am

Hi David,

Thanks for a great article. My husband and i have been having discussions about debt and we agree its not the way to live and your article puts a lot of the issues in perspective.

I’d appreciate your opinion where debt is for purchase of a home. (We both work 8-5 jobs and paying our bond instead of rent seems a reasonable thing to do)

Be blessed!

nitzaly October 18, 2012 at 5:34 pm

thats illegal

David Peach October 24, 2012 at 9:24 am

Faffy, Thank you for your comment. I am glad this helped.

The way I (as well as many Christian financial planners) see going into debt for a home is that it is an appropriate thing to do. The reason is that a house appreciates in value. Or, at least, typically does not lose value faster than the time to pay it off. In other words, if you buy a house for $10,000 (don’t we all wish we could?), and God calls you to be a missionary 3 years down the road. You can turn around and sell your house and probably get your $10,000 back plus some equity. You have not really lost money.

However, if you have credit card debt of $10,000 and you lost your job, the situation is completely different. Now you have no way of paying back that $10,000. And next month the bill is $10,200. Interest builds up against you and the value of the items you purchased is either non-existent or depreciating. At that point you will still be paying on a credit card for items you probably no longer have. You can’t honor God with your money. You also could not cut yourself free to serve God full time if He asked you to do so.

Does that help?

As a missionary living on the generous donations by God’s people, it is not right for me to expect church people to pay off foolish debt to credit cards and banks when they think they are giving me money to do the Lord’s work.

We should consider everything we have as a gift from God. Would it be right to presume upon God to pay our $500 / month credit card bill when He was not the one who put us in that situation to begin with?

Thanks for your comments and question.

jennifer October 16, 2012 at 7:43 am

I’m really very blessed by your articles . It’s encouraging to know that there are people out there that dedicated their life to the Lord. .. God bless u always and the ministry..

Josh October 16, 2012 at 8:50 am

Thanks for this article, David. Great advice and needed advice for so many of us.

Pamela Rose Williams October 16, 2012 at 9:16 am

Hi David, very good article and much needed. I love your “Don’t buy unless” tips. I espescially like #3. We have a similar rule for all purchasesover $100 to avoid impulse spending. We wait 3 days and pray about it and then at the end of 3 days we purchase it if we have peace. This has really saved us through the years. Well done brother.

David Peach October 24, 2012 at 9:29 am

Thanks Pam.

One other thing my wife and I do is when we go to buy a big item (especially if it is from an individual) is that we don’t take money with us. We go and look at the item, talk it over and then tell the seller we have to go to the bank/ATM to get the cash. This gives us a chance to drive away and think about and discuss the item without the pressure.

Of course, if we decide to not buy the item, then we either go back to the seller or call them. Unless there is no question about us wanting to purchase the item, we never tell the seller it is a done deal until we get back with the money. That gives God a chance to send someone else to buy the item out from under us saving us from a poor decision.

Justin October 16, 2012 at 9:32 am

I am deep in debt via school loans, bills, and money owed to friends. I recognIze that my difficult financial situation is a result of me not being a good steward when I had a well paying job and money to spare. I know that to get out of this rut I need to trust God completely with my needs, yet I find it insanely difficult to do so. A lifetime of poverty in a consumerist society has caused me to spend unwisely and covet the things I can’t afford. Additionally, I’ve noticed that those of my race, (African-American) pressure us more to buy brand name clothes to keep up with trends, even with a closet full of clothes. I am desperately trying to trust God, I just can’t seem to do it.

David Peach October 24, 2012 at 9:36 am

Justin, I trust God will help you through this. I understand the pressure to buy the latest and greatest things. I fell prey to that often in the past. However, I really feel God has given me victory over that. It is not something easy to do and maybe God has given me some experiences that have helped me greatly. Having a good wife who knows how to plan has been a huge help. I am an impulsive buyer. My wife is deliberate and methodical with money. I thank God for her.

Even if you don’t have a supportive person in your life, there is something that I think we can all learn from. Spend time seeing how other people less fortunate than you live. I’m not talking about people who have no money but are in debt up to their eye-balls. I mean people from other countries who don’t have any of the opportunities you and I share. Watching documentaries of children from developing nations playing and having fun when you know they own nothing more than the clothes they are wearing. That will give you some perspective on your own situation.

Besides, I have gotten some really nice designer clothes from Goodwill and other thrift stores. I have one friend who outfits her teenage daughters in the latest fashions but rarely buys new clothes. She spends time in thrift stores buying better clothes for $2 than her daughters’ friends can afford to buy in the store.

God bless you as He helps you through this Justin. Pay off what you can as soon as you can. There is great freedom to knowing that you are not in debt to others.

Mabel October 16, 2012 at 12:22 pm

Thank you Lord, I needed this advice sssssssoooooooo much in this day! God Bless you, my brother! 🙂

Anastasia October 16, 2012 at 4:31 pm

Great article and advice. Thank you again.

Blessings for you and family! 🙂

Dereck October 16, 2012 at 7:03 pm

Hi David,

Great article!! I want to tell you that I survive on a disability right now. I have been doing this since 2005. I am making no where close to the money I was making when I was working.

I must admit that when I started making good money I was not giving to the church what i thought I should have given. Now, I want to give more and I can’t because of my health situation and the money I do get.

My question is like others above who have asked it, what are Christians to do when we want to purchase a house or a car, which we both know, a house costs upwards of $200,000.00 or a car that costs upwards of $25,000.00. So, we have no choice but to go into debt. We have to borrow that money, well, most of us.. How should we do this?

Thanks

Peace and Love

Dereck

David Peach October 24, 2012 at 10:05 am

Dereck, thank you for your questions. My parents are very much in the same situation with a fixed income that you are in. I understand the struggle.

I did not mention in the article about savings but I should have. I think most of us don’t see any way that we can save money with the debts that we already owe. However, if we could have something in the bank to help us in our later years, that would be great. A topic for another article.

I will let you look at my thought about buying a house in a comment I left above to Faffy.

Concerning a car, I think we spend money on cars and vehicles that we don’t need to. I am not saying you have to drive a clunker, but if you can’t afford a $25,000 car, then you should not buy one. A car is not an investment. They devalue too quickly. Certainly buying used is better than buying new. The depreciation on a new car is worse when the car is newer. The older a car is (within reason) the longer it will hold its value. This means that if you go into debt to buy a $3,500 car and have to sell it in 6 months or 2 years, you can probably get out of it what you still owe.

I understand people say they need to have a reliable car for work. But sometimes I think it is an excuse to buy a car they cannot afford. In the last 12 months I have driven 33,000 miles in my 14 year old car with my family. We have been in 21 different states for ministry purposes. Our car has its problems, but it is paid for. When I do need to drop $200 or $500 for repairs it hurts less when I consider that with a new car I would be spending that much money every month in a car payment and I still might have repairs to make. Unless you can pay cash (and not blink an eye at it) for a new car, you do not need one nor can afford one.

If you need a car and have to take out a loan for it, then buying an $8,000 car (or less if you can get by with one) will put you in less debt to the bank than a new $25,000 car.

And, if the worst comes to worst, a $100 bicycle will save you gas, a car payment and put you in the best shape of your life. There have been times when spending the $2 in gas to go back and forth to my office was too much to bear. My $35 pawn shop bicycle has gotten me to where I need to go.

I hope this helps you and many others.

nobin October 18, 2012 at 1:55 am

hi david
thanks for giving wonderful advice in my life….

Davida November 16, 2012 at 1:14 am

Great post. stArting with having the right perspective is ever so crucial, to understand than we are not owners but managers. That will go along way towards solving all the issues of mismanagement, that come further down the line.





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