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Living Debt-Free is Your Spiritual Birthright!
Today we live in a world where being in debt is the norm, rather than the exception. Many today are struggling to make ends meet, and are burdened down with lots of debt, unable to break free, because debt is financial slavery. It’s financial slavery, because debt keeps you busy working to pay your lenders, instead of yourself. The borrower is indeed a slave to the lender (Proverbs 22:7). Fortunately for us however, getting relief from debts is a spiritual law, which we can activate at any time, to start the process of living debt-free. The conventional wisdom of the world teaches us that to get out of debt, one must cut expenses and earn more. Now while that may be true for paying off your debts in the short run, it does not give you any strategies for debt-free living in the long run. As a matter of fact, it’s very possible to earn more and still struggle with debt. For most people, earning more only gives them more power to buy more things, which puts them in more debt. The bigger the income, the greater the buying power, and the greater ability to create more debt. Cutting back on expenses is a strategy to get out of debt, as long as the money saved on expenses go to pay debts, but as soon as the debts are paid off, many of us go back to our bad spending habits, and are back in debt. Consequently, I have developed a debt relief program, based on Biblical/spiritual teachings, which are well-explained in my two books: Surviving a Global Economic Crisis, A Biblical Perspective and Out of Financial Hell, A Journey Into Divine Abundance. My debt relief program does not consist of two steps, but FIVE steps, which will not only help you to get out of debt, but also help you to keep out of debt, and increase your inflows, so you can have more money to afford some of the nicer things in life.
Step One: Assess Your Financial Status
Before you go and purchase anything, it’s important to know if you have the funds to purchase it, and whether you can afford it. A lot of times we make a lot of small, affordable purchases, not realizing we are going over budget, by taking money for one thing and paying for another. In other instances, when we want to buy something we cannot afford to buy cash, and we take out a loan to purchase it, with small affordable payments, not realizing how much those small affordable payments do add up, and eventually become unaffordable, as our budget tightens. In Luke 14:28 Jesus says, “For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?” Yet that is exactly what many of us do NOT do. You can assess your financial status by filling out a simple Income and Expense Report, to see if you have anything left over when you pay your bills. If you do not earn enough to pay your bills, then you have less than enough. If you break even then you have just enough, and if you have a balance on your Income and Expense statement, then you have more than enough. The Income and Expense Report will also give you a visual of where your money is going, even if you have more than enough, because those with more than enough are still at risk to have less than enough, if too much debt is taken on.
Step Two: Eliminate Wasteful Spending
We have all heard this before, that we should cut back on wasteful spending, but what exactly is wasteful spending? Is it wasteful spending to watch a movie, eat out at a restaurant, or go on a vacation? Not necessarily, but if you are serious about paying off your debts, then you need to focus your spending on your needs, and cut out your wants. Needs are things necessary for survival. Wants are things which satisfy the pleasure center in our brains. Satisfying your wants instead of your needs, does nothing to satisfy your needs, and thus create even more lack in your life. For example, eating out at an expensive restaurant might fill your need for food for that meal, but create a lack in food for the rest of the week, whereas the money you spent on one meal in that restaurant could have bought you food for the rest of the week. In addition, not all our needs can be purchased with money, and yet we this is exactly what we try to do. Needs such as having good friends, intimacy, love, and self-esteem, cannot be purchased with money. Our spiritual needs cannot be satisfied with money. Take care of your needs, pay off your debts, and then you will be able to enjoy the things you want. This is why Jesus says:
“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”~ Matthew 6:33
Step Three: Increase Your Inflows
It goes without saying that increasing your income will help you to pay off your debts easier; however, if you don’t get your spending under control, your increased income will only cause you to spend more, and get you into more debt. Perhaps more important than increasing your income is keeping more of what you make, by decreasing your outflows. You do that by setting up an emergency fund. When you regularly fund an emergency fund, it makes you keep more of what you make, instead of spending it all, thus increasing your cash flow. In addition, a strategically managed emergency fund, placed in a financial institution, in an interest-bearing account, will increase your inflows. An emergency fund also makes it easier to pay your bills, when there is a disruption in your inflows, so that you do not go deeper into debt, and increase your outflows. Increasing your inflows is also based on the spiritual laws of abundance found in the Bible. You have a choice. You can either waste your money in “riotous living” such as the prodigal son, or you can seek ways to earn more with what you have, as in The Parable of the Talents.
Step Four: Snowball Your Debts
Snowballing is a debt repayment method which allows you to pay off your debts faster, one debt at a time, by rolling over the money you used to pay off the first debt, into the second debt, and so forth, until all the debts are paid off. What I like about snowballing is that it frees up cash as you pay off each debt, so you’re not cash-strapped during the debt repayment process. Snowballing releases you from debt, one debt at a time, until they are all gone, thus helping you to fulfill Romans 13:8, of owing no one anything.
Step Five: Get Relief For Your Debts
If you are living on a fixed income, increasing your income may not be possible, but that should not stop you from seeking relief for or from your debts. Debt relief can come in the form of getting lower interest or zero interest payments on loans. In certain instances, debt can be eliminated completely with debt forgiveness programs, without you having to file for bankruptcy. Debt forgiveness was a part of the debt management system of ancient Israel under the old covenant, but there are still opportunities for us today to take advantage of debt forgiveness, where available. In the new covenant, the spiritual law of debt forgiveness is still to be found, and is found in the Lord’s prayer. “And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.” (Matthew 6:12). When we forgive those who owe us money, because they cannot repay their debts, then expect for opportunities to arise, where your own debts will be paid off. This doesn’t mean you should go out and lend money to those who cannot repay you, so that you can get your debts cancelled. It means when you give to others in need, not asking them to repay you, and you give joyfully, and not grudgingly, then that will activate the spiritual laws of debt relief in your life.
Bonus Step: Receive FREE Financial Coaching To Get Started
It is therefore my joy to give you FREE financial coaching for one week to get started, as well as a FREE Income and Expense Report form, all through email. Register below for FREE COACHING, and write the words DEBT FREE in the message box, and I’ll send you the information.