Sometimes I feel the need to shout “Shut up, Dave!!!” But then if I did people might think I’m crazy and I try to avoid that perception as much as possible. Seriously, though, those of you who have ever read Dave Ramsey’s books, attended his courses or even just listened to his radio broadcasts can probably relate to hearing his Southern voice in your head “Live like no one else now so later you can live like no one else!” There are times I wish I could just forget everything I’ve ever heard him say and go on a ridiculous shopping spree. But I am way more responsible than that! (Now I am, that is.)
Dave’s financial advice and wisdom are based on Biblical truth and principles; they are nothing new or profound. In fact, in reality they are very basic in essence. So why does what he have to say strike so deeply in our hearts for those of us who have put his counsel into practice?
Above all, it is based in God’s Word, so naturally it is going to cut to the core. He really is a genius, this guy. Take Someone else’s (God’s) idea for how to wisely handle money, completely ignore it for awhile and let your misuse of finances ruin you a few times, turn back and live according to that Someone’s idea, and then start making money by teaching people how to do it themselves! He didn’t even have to come up with the plan himself! Sweet deal.
I joke because I believe Dave’s wisdom is totally right on in accordance with the Word of God and I think he is truly out to help others experience life that is not enslaved to “things” that we have, lenders, the obsession of keeping up with everyone else and such.
Materialism is exhausting, don’t you think? I used to be very materialistic, only wearing certain brands of clothes, buying whatever I wanted at the moment with my pretty plastic card and not thinking farther than the next week as far as my financial situation was concerned.
Nathan has been good for me in many, many ways, especially in the area of consumerism; he is the absolute least materialistic person I know. When we first got married our finances were overwhelming for me; I had to suddenly be responsible! I was used to spending money however I wanted with no thought for the next day. And then there was Nathan, used to having a mortgage and utilities and regular bills that needed paying. Even if we were millionaires, I imagine Nathan would always be very conservative with our money; that’s just who he is. I on the other hand, not quite so much, at least naturally.
Since we’ve been married our priorities have changed (yes, even responsible Nathan’s) and although we don’t pretend to have it all figured out, we have decided that we will do our best to become intentional with our money, we will not live enslaved to creditors, we will deliberately live within our means.
It all comes down to perspective. What defines who we are? The “things” we accumulate? The dollar amount we spend on objects? The cars we drive?
My hope for my family is that instead of living wrapped up in acquiring more and more, we would be good stewards of what God has blessed with and be able to bless others generously.
Although I joke about screaming “Shut up, Dave!” his financial wisdom is something everyone can glean from. It is simple and able to be implemented by anyone. But whether you feel the need to “makeover” your money situation or not is really not my point when it comes down to it.
More importantly, I hope we all take a good, long look at why we do what we do and who we do it for. It matters. It matters in money, it matters in relationships, it matters in life.