7 out of 10 homes live paycheck to paycheck regardless of income. What causes this to happen?
Larry Burkett once said that today’s generation attempts to obtain the same standard living as our parents within five years. The problem is it took our parents thirty years to get there. Here is a basic time line to illustrate what I am talking about.
After high school, most (not all) students start off college with no debt. However, to pay for college, student loans then enter the picture. 3 out of 5 students with credit cards will max out their credit cards by the end of their freshman year. After graduating college then we are off to find our job. Once we land a job, we go and buy a car with monthly payments. During our first few weeks on the job, we are told that we need to invest in our future by investing in a 401k (and you do not want to miss out on the free money and compound interest), then one of our college buddies sells us on the need for life insurance. And then everyone tells us that renting is bad and you need to buy a house, like yesterday. So we buy a house. Then we get married and have kids. Now we have more mouths to feed, not to mention the medical bills, soccer pictures and Christmas that comes along. Does this sound familiar?
What happens is we attempt to do everything all at once and become broke. Most of the stuff that we do ends up not done well at all. According to research that was done by Scottrade, 63% of Americans in 2009 did not save for retirement because of non-mortgage related debt, and they are projecting 61% for this year. More and more tax preparers are telling us that every year the number of households borrowing on their 401k is rising at very noticeable numbers!
What we teach at Strong Tower Consulting is the baby steps. The baby steps will cause you to focus on one thing at a time with maximum focus. This causes you to WIN with your money. We show regular people, just like you, how to get out of debt and build wealth. Our goal is to map out a winning game plan to get you out of debt in three years or LESS! Imagine, owing nobody anything. Imagine having complete control of your finances.
8 out of 10 adults agree they would benefit from advice and answers to everyday financial questions from a professional. If you are tired of living paycheck to paycheck, and want a professional to show you how to live DEBT FREE, schedulea free 30 minute consultation today!
More and more I counsel people that would love to give to their local church; however, consumer debt and lack of understanding on how giving relates to personal finance hinders most members to give as their hearts desire. So how does a person give to their local church when they are attempting to get out of debt?
First, it would be helpful to understand what a tithe is. The word tithe literally means “one-tenth”. So a tithe would be giving 10% of your income or increase in net worth to your local church.
This is where doing a monthly budget comes into play. When you are budgeting any given months income and expenses, determine your tithe first before any other expenses. That way, you are ensuring that you are giving to your church each month. What I have found is, if you wait and budget tithing last, you may become inclined to spend that money elsewhere.
I know when my wife and I first got married we tithed faithfully from the beginning even while money was really tight. Not even a year into our marriage, I lost my job. A couple months later, I was back to work (however on less pay).
I will never forget the day that my wife shared with me that we did not have enough money to pay rent that was coming due in a few days. The feeling that left me with was a very unpleasant one. My wife then followed that statement with, “All we need is a check from Heaven.”
A few days later, I received a call from an elder from the church we were attending during that time. After the hellos and how are yous, the elder asked, “How much money do you need for rent next month?”
I was shocked! Nobody knew of our financial situation. At first I stated that you do not need to give us any money, we will find a way to struggle through. The elder requested again to assist my family, and we ended up taking him up on his offer. My wife was right, all we needed was a check from Heaven, and that is exactly what we received!
We know that a “check from heaven” is not always going to be the answer to our financial difficulties. Sometimes God allows us to fall with lessons along the way. But, God does say that he will give us our daily bread. Faithfully tithing can be a way to show that you trust God even when things are financially tight.
It is my encouragement based on scripture to tithe, even while you are working your way out of debt. I know this will more than likely be very difficult, and you may have to extend your debt snowball a little longer.
At the end of the day, follow the conviction of the Holy Spirit. Do not confuse condemnation by the evil one as conviction from the Holy Spirit. Ask God through prayer and reading the Bible on what He would have you to do.
If you would like to find out more on how you can tithe while getting out of debt, schedule a free 30 minute consultation, today.