Sunday, October 24, 2010

Avoiding the Debt Trap, and Trying to Get Out of It

In the process of trying to improve our credit enough to buy a house this last year, we succumbed to the debt trap. Boy is it a trap. I remember all to well now, why we never wanted to go back.

It just doesn't make sense that lenders won't lend to you if you have no credit, i.e. no debt. However, we started our way back in by buying a car last fall, because my car was having serious problems, and we hoped it might improve our credit. It helped some, but not quite enough.

A couple months later, we got a small credit card. That did the trick, within a few months, we had a new house, with a nice new, hefty house payment. Of course, it is a beautiful home! We love it, and it is perfect in many ways. However, shortly after we moved into our large new house payment, our family vehicle, the trusty suburban, (a necessity for a family of 8 and 1 dog), suffered from a terminal transmission.

Enter hefty car payment #2. Within one year, we went from 100% debt free, to an oversized home payment, 2 extra large car payments, and 1 not small enough credit card payment. Wow, have we felt the weight of this. It is amazing how horrible it feels to have debt, and how enslaving.

Now that I am moving forward with my new business, Bay Area Birth, I have been very tempted to get into more debt. In the church I attend, we have many times, and very recently again, been counseled to stay out of and get out of debt. So, with each new, better, and better credit offer, I have had to try harder and harder to push the thoughts out of my head. With a lot of prayer and change in thought patterns it is getting easier.

One experience I want to share about this, is that yesterday, I was told I was going to be sent home early. I was very upset about that, because, especially right now, every hour I work is counted into my budget. I was planning on the extra 2 hours or so I should have worked.

As I was gathering equipment to take to a patient's room, a recent credit card offer crossed my mind. I thought about how I could buy some needed supplies for my business, and pay for more advertising. Just as quickly, I pushed those thoughts aside, and prayed fervently that Heavenly Father would help me have the strength to follow his guidance and avoid debt, and that if I were to follow his guidance, he would help things to work out.

I went into the patient's room, and by the time I left, about 20 minutes later, the charge nurse came up to me and said they would not be sending me home after all. I knew it was an answer to my prayers, and I had passed one more test in the process towards getting out of our debt trap.

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