Sunday, December 20, 2009
Debt Free, Baby
I'd like to tell ya'll a little story.
Once upon a time, there was a frazzled mom of three who wanted to buy her kids Christmas gifts. Due to the stupid economy, the mom's husband didn't make as much money as usual, and money was tight. Instead of trusting that her husband would make money in time, or wait on God, she chose to go to her employer and take out a $1200 loan, for 12 months at 12%, with the money owed being directly withdrawn from her paycheck. The mom knew that debt was not a great idea, but didn't want her kids to miss out on Christmas presents. So unbeknownst to her hubby, she signed the papers, got $1200, and shopped away. It was a lovely Christmas. The children, hubby and extended family all loved their gifts. Unfortunately, a year later, Mom cannot even remember what she bought, and is happy that the last payment is THIS FRIDAY, Christmas Day of course, which is sort of a wonky coincidence, no?
This year, Mom still wants to buy her little darlings gifts, and the economy still is in the pooper. But instead of frantically jumping on the loan bandwagon again (although it was tempting and would have been easy to pull off), this somewhat wiser woman chose to wait on the Lord. "Lord," she prayed, "You know our needs. You know our wants. You know we've been mostly faithful in tithing (I've missed a few, I admit.), and we've given charitably, and we do our very best not to live outside our means. Lord, please figure out a way for me to give my kids a wonderful Christmas, and do it all in Your Name. Amen."
Well, Christmas was one week away. The paycheck from her husband's extra job was a month late. The only money coming in was from her, and it was just enough to keep the power on, food on the table, and gas in the vehicles. It was tight, oh yes. The mom was wondering what was going to happen.
And then something did.
The phone rang. It was the old jerky boss of the husband, calling to tell him the paychecks had come in. The mom's husband met up with the jerky boss, obtained his check, and realized it was for about $500 more than expected. He had forgotten about a few extra shifts he had worked. He excitedly called his wife and said, "I will bring you the cash so you can pay bills and finish up the shopping while I drive into a blizzard in Virginia!" So once the frazzled mom did silly things like buy cat food for the VERY ANGRY KITTIES and COFFEE for the VERY FRAZZLED MOM, and pay the cell phone and the power and the car payment, she realized something astonishing. The amount that was left...to purchase Christmas gifts?...
It ended up being $1200. The very same exact amount she had borrowed the year before, with 12% interest.
at 10:16:00 PM