I never really saw the need to get out of debt until a few years ago. I had accepted the fact that debt was always going to be a part of my life and that it was something I just had to live with.
I grew up learning that everyone needs a good credit score. When I was 18, I got my first credit card, charged some things I wanted and made monthly minimum payments like I thought I was supposed to do. Before I knew it, I was charging the most random things on a daily basis so I could build my credit score. A morning trip to get coffee? Eating lunch with a friend? Some new clothes? It’s OK, just put it on the credit card. That was my mentality.
Then, I began charging things to get rewards. I rationalized that it was OK to charge my monthly bills as long as I paid the balance off at the end of the month. A few months I might not make the full payment, but I justified it because I received 1% cash back on all purchases. At the time it made sense in my head, so why not?
Then one day I read Proverbs 22:7. The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender. I had heard the verse many times, but then during prayer one day, the weight of that verse hit me. I remember talking with God and having dreams of buying groceries for people at the store, helping out with causes I believed in, adopting children from other countries, and even one crazy idea of building an orphanage.
I had no idea on how I was going to do any of that. I had thousands in student loans, I financed a brand new car, and had thousands in credit card debt.
Then I read Proverbs 13:22: A good person leaves an inheritance for their children's children, but a sinner's wealth is stored up for the righteous.
That day with the help of God and my wife, those two verses dramatically changed our view on money and what God wanted us to do with it. Tomorrow, I’ll share why debt is not a tool, and a common misconception around the term “good debt.”