March 17, 2023
Repaying Our Debts
Solomon – “Just as the rich rule the poor, so the borrower is servant to the lender.” (Proverbs 22:7)
Someone once said, “If our out-go exceeds our income then our upkeep will be our downfall.” Like most members of the human race, we often want something so much that we are quick to borrow to get it and then we end up putting ourselves and our children in financial bondage. Nothing can empty our bank accounts faster than debt, especially consumer or credit card debt. If we’re going to live the good life, we’re going to have to repay our debts as quickly as possible.
When we’re indebted to someone, it is as if we are working for them. Someone wisely stated, “It seems to take half as long to get into debt and twice as long to get out.” Ron Blue, author of Master Your Money, writes that “Getting into debt is as easy as sliding down an ice-covered mountain and getting out of debt is as hard as trying to climb back up that same mountain.”
Do you remember Wimpy from the Popeye cartoons? He had a famous line where he said, “I will gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today.” Most of us have probably ascertained that Wimpy never paid for those hamburgers he consumed on credit. How many of us are building up debt like Wimpy? We’re buying temporary things today that we hope we can pay for on Tuesday or next month or next year. In reality, with each item, we’re putting ourselves in bondage. The Bible teaches us, “You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of men.” (1 Corinthians 7:23 NIV)
What are the steps to paying off debt? First, we should pray and seek godly help. If you’re in a Life Group, you have a godly group of people around you who can offer you advice and point you to principles in God’s word to help you overcome your problem. Second, one day at a time, make a commitment to incur no new debt. This advice is offered by many financial advisors. This means you will make the commitment to not go into any new debt today. Third, establish a budget. We listed the steps to creating a budget in yesterday’s devotion. You can find more detailed information at www.ramseysolutions.com. Fourth, create a list of your assets and liabilities. This will give you a clear picture of the amount of debt you possess. Finally, establish a debt repayment plan. Many financial advisors recommend that you pay off your smallest debts first to feel a sense of accomplishment. As you pay off your first debt, take the funds you were paying on the first debt and add it to what you are paying on the second debt. This is called the debt snowball method.
The Lord can miraculously help us overcome our debt if we cooperate with Him. It might mean driving your car for a few more years. It might mean waiting to purchase things until you have the money. Whatever plan you make to get out of debt, stick with it faithfully until you have paid off every one.
FOLLOW UP ACTIVITY
Walk through the steps to paying off debt once again. If you have outstanding debt, write out a plan in your journal or on a piece of paper to pay it off as soon as possible. If you’re leading your family through this devotion, have a discussion about the importance of paying off debt. If you’re comfortable with doing so, create a plan as a family for paying off your family debt.
PRAYER FOR TODAY
Lord, give me the wisdom I need to pay off my debts as quickly as possible. In the name of Jesus I pray, Amen.