Tuesday, May 27, 2008

What A Novel Idea!

May 23rd IOW

“If you’ll live like no one else, then later you can live like no one elseDave Ramsey

By itself, this quote from Dave Ramsey doesn’t make any sense at all. We read it and dismiss what it has to say to us because we fail to take it further and try to figure out what his point was. It’s like taking out of context something Jesus said and leaving it at that without going further to what issue surrounded it. For example this quote from Jesus “Let them alone. They are blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind leads the blind, both will fall into a ditch.”

If you know your Bible well enough you can figure out what Jesus was talking about but those new to the Bible might be scratching their heads and wondering what in the world is He saying here. “Leave who alone? What do you mean “both will fall into a ditch? Both, who?” You can either sit and guess what the conclusion is or go after the answers that are true and not just someone’s opinion and find out for yourself.

Digging deeper into what Dave Ramsey was trying to say here instead of scratching our heads and guessing, we find that the context in which the quote was taken from had to do with dealing with money. Uh oh, can we stop right here and stay ignorant? No!

Being the conductor of Total Money Makeover workshops Dave was talking about how we need to live below our means and be debt free. In other words we shouldn’t spend every penny we make right away like most people do, so later we will have money to live on. Thus if we live like no one else and don’t spend all we make the minute we make it then we can later live like no one else because we will have money to live on. Wow, what a novel idea, too bad we don’t follow that advice.

For too long we have stretched our pocketbook and paycheck so far that if we dare to let go or lose our means of support it comes back on us like a rubberband pulled back to its maximum length. If you hold the rubberband there long enough eventually your fingers are going to tire and the rubberband will go flying. Stretch your paycheck far enough and long enough eventually something will go flying. If not your pocketbook then it could be your sanity of trying to keep up with what you created through poor spending and saving habits.

My spending and saving habits have been far from perfect, a C average at the most perhaps if not a D-depending on my mood. Good excuse huh? The answer is “No” again sweetie. We have no excuse. Passing from generation to generation our eye color, DNA, or family name is acceptable but passing along our money habits to our youth should not be permissible. If the birthday money our kids get for their birthday burns a hole in their pocket because they just can’t wait to spend it we need to look at our own pocket to see if its on fire as we anxiously look to spend what we just now received.

CLOSING THOUGHT: Going back to Jesus’ quote the “them” He told the disciples to leave alone were the Pharisees. (Matthew 15:14 NKJV) People who thought they knew what they were talking about but really didn’t. Eventually it turned into a matter of the blind leading the blind both heading straight for a ditch somewhere if not corrected. It’s important that we don’t do that to the next generation and the ones after that, being people who blindly lead the blind in the area of money.

Sadly enough we’d rather follow the blind into the ditch of bankruptcy, poverty or paycheck to paycheck living instead of following a sighted person who can help us down the road of life. Not intelligent traveling skills to live by that’s for sure on our part. It’s time to learn and show that we have learned. Doing so by living by the knowledge we have obtained or at least by what other people have learned and are willing to share with us. What a novel idea!

Our host this week is Amy so go on over there and see what she and others have to say about today’s quote.


Denise said...

Really nice post.

Michelle Bentham said...

Loved how you brought it into perspective about taking things out of context. Well said. Thanks for sharing your personal story and allowing us to learn from you!


Maisie said...

You sure have a neat way of explaining things Karen. And I like your closing thoughts. I hope that I can help my kids do their personal finances the correct way. It's worth the price I've paid by doing it wrong, if it motivates me to help them do it right.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with teaching our children good spending habits. They do learn so much from us, don't they?!?