Taking Control of your Finances

The rich rules over the poor, And the borrower becomes the lender's slave.
- Proverbs 22:7

One of the top arguments in marriage is finances. Why? Because you have two people who made their own money for themselves and now must share in paying bills and spending money with their spouse. We need money to survive in this country and with the unemployment rate very high among fresh out of college students, no one wants to marry with no job or money. In fact, people are waiting a much longer time to marry because they simply can't afford it.

Before marriage, even before meeting my husband, I was in deep deep debt. I had no control of my finances and once I met my husband, I realized we are financially  complete opposites. I had credit and he did not. 

While engaged, a good friend of ours gave us sometning that we would forever be grateful for called Financial Peace University by Dave Ramsey (http://daveramsey.com/fpu/online). 

Financial Peace University gave our marriage peace regarding money.  It taught us more about money then we could have ever learned elsewhere. You see my husband and I hardly fight about money, it's not even an issue. We still struggle but we don't fight, instead of fighting about money, we unite to find a common result. 

I want to share some tips my husband and I learned, which have helped out our marriage tremendously. I really encourage you to write these down. 

• Create a budget- Be realistic and what that means is jot everything down (i.e. clothing, gas, food, debt, car maintenance, etc.). Write it down in a notebook or a piece of paper in order to have a tangible budget. Also have one in your phone where you can create notes or write down when something is paid. 

Here's our budget for Sept 1 checks 

Set up monthly budget meetings- It needs to be in a calendar where your spouse and yourself can both take 10 minutes out of that day to go over the budget. This gives both of you an opportunity to know where your money is going. 

Save 10% towards an emergency fund- Always put aside 10% of your income into a separate account because there will ALWAYS be emergencies. Instead of using your credit cards for emergencies, use your funds you put aside. 

• Pay off your debt- As the verse says, you will be a slave to the credit card companies if you continue burying yourself deeper into the debt hole. Budget in your payments AND (underline) pay off the lowest credit card first. Then go to the next, this is called the Snowball Effect. 

Give your tithes- Oooh I probably struck a nerve! The reality is, giving to God first always helps you get out of the debt hole. My husband and I give our tithes no matter what and why? Because the money isn't even ours to begin with. 

Try this out in your household and look into taking FPU (Financial Peace University). For more info, click on the link  http://daveramsey.com/fpu/online to sign up. I encourage you to really jump on the debt free bandwagon because it will help your marriage and give you freedom. Let us know what's helped you and your spouse stay debt free or if you have any tips you can share in the comment section below. 

Thank you for income, jobs, cars and homes. You give us 90% and ask for 10% because you know how we are as humans but you love us anyway. I pray for these marriages that have money bondage to let you be in control of their finances. 
In you name Amen. 

For His Glory,

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