Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Financial Peace or Heartbreak: Which Will You Chose?

My confidence is shaken. A year ago, I was sure of my life and my calling. I was in my last year at FSU, close to getting engaged to my wonderful (now) husband, and I had no doubt in my mind that I would get a teaching job. That confidence continued through the spring and into the summer. I graduated from FSU and Austin and I got married. I was still confident that I would get a teaching job. After all, God called me to be a teacher- of that I was certain. If that was certain, then it was also certain that I would get a job. I was wrong. He had other plans for my life. It took me a while, but I accepted it and have worked to maintain peace with that and to figure out where He is leading me. It is true that throughout this fall I have had several opportunities to help friends through things and be there for them in ways I would not have been able to had I been teaching. That fact is not something to be ignored. I am grateful for every opportunity that God gives me to serve him and help my friends. But now I've started rambling...

My point in looking back and remembering all of this comes in when I look to the future. Austin is in a one year Masters of Economics program and will graduate next August. I am so proud of him. He is working extremely hard and excelling amongst his peers. He has already started putting his name out there and searching for jobs. He is beginning the interview process with a consulting company sometime this month. I have had no doubt that he would get hired with this firm and make his career with them. They are an excellent company with a drive to help their employees excel. As I said, I am so proud of him.
The unfortunate part about it all is that he will graduate with a large amount of student loans. Should he get this job (or another with a similar firm) we will have no problems in paying off this debt. Why? Because we are learning how to manage our money through Financial Peace University by Dave Ramsey. His motto is, "If you will live like no one else, later you can LIVE like no one else!" Meaning, that if we live modestly and below our means now and continue that way until we are debt free, later in life we will be able to live like no one else because we will be, in a word, rich. That is an exciting concept. Yesterday, however, as we went through his lesson on dumping debt, I had a panic attack. Right now, we do not have the means to make large payments on his student loans. This hasn't been a cause for concern because we figure that if he gets a job staring right after he graduates, we will be able to pour our resources and knock out the debt.

This is where my shaken confidence comes into play. What if he doesn't get a job? I was so sure I was going to get a job, but I didn't. What if my high confidence that he will get a job is going to prove to be untrue? What will we do? The job market is not a friendly place for job hunters, as I have discovered. What happens if we are both in this situation of trying to find any job we can? Here I must trust God, and we must live by the principles we are learning from Dave Ramsey.
I strongly encourage any one reading this to consider attending a Financial Peace University class. You will learn how to get rid of debt, make a complete budget and live on it, as well as save and invest to the point where all of your children's (or future children's) college, grad school, weddings, etc, will be covered. You will learn that it is possible to buy nice cars and even houses in CASH. Your marriage will never be torn apart by the most common cause of divorce: money fights. Whether you have debt or not, you live outside your means, or not; Dave Ramsey can and will change your life. I have seen it in my parent's life and one day not too far in the future, I will be reaping the rewards of living responsibly. So what will you choose? Financial Peace or Financial Heartbreak?