And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
I don't know why, but I feel compelled to talk to you today about our debt. Maybe it's just another "truth" that God wants me to share.
I've shared that we're in debt, I've shared that our financial situation is not good right now, but for some reason, God wants me to take this deeper. Maybe this is to remind me things aren't as bad as we think, maybe this is to remind you things are not as bad for you as you might think. Maybe, someone will read this, and have an idea where we can make changes, or do something different, maybe you will see where you can make changes...who knows. This blog is for Him, this post if for Him, and I just pray that He is glorified in some way by it.
We are in debt! Yes, I've said it before, I may even have given specifics. But here is a list of our current financial situation, for all to see. (Seriously, who in their right mind shares financial information with everyone on the Internet).
This is long, but there is a point to it all, I promise! ;)
DEBT: We are approximately $21,000 in debt. This does not include a car debt, mortgage, nothing of value. This is from a young couple getting married and falling into the trap that they needed it all, they deserved it all and they didn't have to wait for it. Followed by the trap that they spent more than they could afford, and then had to use their credit card to buy groceries, and pay for gas because all their "extra" income was going towards paying the debt.
This is a trap we are still in. There is no extra, we live paycheck to paycheck (which currently there isn't one because hubby is laid off for 5 months). I'm so ashamed to have gotten into this mess in the first place. To have "wanted" for so much, when there are so many who do not even have enough for their basic needs.
Our current monthly debt payment is between $550 and $700 depending on how much we owe on the credit card. This is paying for a line of credit, and a credit card.
We recently sold our car and paid that debt off, so our debt had come down $250 a month, whoo! Unfortunately the downside is we had to purchase a much older less reliable vehicle, which just broke down the other week and cost us $500 to fix (and it's still not running very well). I'm still grateful for that debt to be forgiven.
BILLS: We currently pay for....
Hydro 140 (we have a wood stove for heat, and have been blessed with wood as gifts)
Car insurance 67 (Praise God for our cheap van that doesn't cost much to insure!)
Internet 60 (This covers our Phone and Internet service)
Phone ...See above..
Bank Fee 12 (I've tried other options, this is the cheapest we can do right now)
Recycling 17 (Now, I know I could cut this out to save money, but I think recycling is very important, and something God has dealt with me on many times (God's an environmentalist!) The time and energy and storage space and cost of gas to take our recycling in just doesn't compare to having it picked up for us.
Rent 850 God blessed us with a beautiful home. I prayed and prayed for months for God to send us the right home for us, but mostly for my oldest daughter. I prayed for the place that she could have childhood memories, and become the person He wanted her to be. Prices at the time for a place like ours were about $1400 a month. I found an add with no price, chuckled to myself at the absurdity of the thought we might be able to afford it and called the woman. I told God I knew that we couldn't afford a penny more than $850 a month.....The woman on the phone told me they were renting it to the right people for $850! I nearly passed out. After a long process and competition with many others wanting the place, we got were able to rent our 5 bedroom, 3 acre paradise, from a couple we found out were Christians who were praying on the other side for the right people to fill their home. Praise God for His blessings and miracles!
TV: We don't have cable
Medical: We are officially broke enough not to have our medical paid for, YAY! lol
Car Debt: Sold our car for an older cheaper one so we would have no debt there.
(A $400 savings right there!)
So for a month we currently owe:
BILLS: 1166 including rent
DEBT: 700 Is about what we usually pay (but hoping this goes down to the $500 range soon)
A normal working month would earn us about $2000, and child tax was normally about $600
Previous monthly income:
Right now my husband doesn't have work. We had one short job for him, which will hopefully bring in about $400 in time for our rent payment at the end of the month. Our child tax has gone up to $800 (see kids don't just cost money). We are waiting to see if my husbands EI claim goes through (not something we want to do, but we do what we have to until hubby can find more work) if it does I'm hoping that will be about $1600 month eventually.
So hopefully soon, our new monthly income will be:
$2400 not a far cry from what we were making before anyway!
$2400 income (eventually)
$1866 bills and debt
That (if our claim goes through) will leave
$534 For groceries and gas...gas is usually about $200 a month. So about $334 a month leftover for groceries, car maintenance and repair, misc, clothing, prescriptions, pet care (we have 1 dog 1 cat and 12 chickens) for a family of 5. $334 seems like a lot to me, but I know we could go through that grocery wise in 1 or 2 weeks. I don't know how I will stretch that properly....and I don't know what to do until we get to that point.
As it stands right now I have $50 for gas, groceries and everything else, until something else comes in.
I want to be forgiven our debts. To be forgiven our debts, would mean and extra $700 a month for my family. But we put ourselves in this situation, and we must work to get out of it. Shouldn't we?
I've been wondering lately (and this is why I wrote this post) are we allowing ourselves to be forgiven this debt? Are we holding it over our own heads as a punishment? God has already forgiven us.
Are we not able to get out of it, is it not being forgiven, because we have not forgiven our debtors? I thought about this. No one owes us anything, we've never had the money to lend to anyone, and I'm sure if we did, we would not hold it over them.
What about things other than money? Is there anyone that you think owes you something? Anyone you feel should be doing something for you? Do you hold an account of what you do for others in comparison to what they do for you? Do you think God owes you, do you think your children owe you, do you think your husband owes you?
I think as women this one comes up often for us. Are you forgiving your debtors? Are you forgiving and continuing to do for others even if you think it's your turn to have something done for you? We shouldn't think anyone owes us anything, but if we do get to that point, we should be willing to forgive that debt.
How about you? Are you willing to share your financial situation with me or others? Would love to see I'm not alone, or ways that you've been able to stretch your dollars.
If your family is struggling at this time also, please read this post: Today, I Pray For YOU!
This post is part of the Raising Homemakers Homemaking Linkup!