Saturday, February 18, 2012

Taking a Deep Breath

Remember in this post when I briefly mentioned that I think God has been blessing all of our hard work and financial stewardship?  I had no idea what I was talking about.

Since that post, we have literally been overwhelmed by various things that keep popping up and providing us with more income than we know what to do with. (Okay, that is a complete lie.  I can always find something to do with extra income!)  It has come in the form of tax returns, random gifts of money or gift cards, extra vacation days discovered, and the list goes on.

I want to to share over the coming weeks what we are able to do with our excess.  Some of it comes in the practical form of finally getting our car registered as an Oregonian and paying off our next 6 months of car insurance that is due next month.

But the one I’m most excited about so far is that we were finally able to pay off our first student loan!!!!!! (Oh, and let me just add an extra !!!! for emphasis). I feel incredibly blessed to be able to accomplish this only a few months after we started tackling these suckers, and even though we have a Long (yes, with a capital L.  I don’t want to talk about it.) way to go, I am celebrating this small success that feels like a big one!  We have calculated how long it should take us to pay off these loans individually, and this one wasn’t supposed to be paid off until April, so I’m over the moon that we got to make it go away 2 months early.

However, even though we sometimes feel buried under our mountain of debt, I want to be really intentional about making sure we’re still giving back as we’re able.  I have tithed 10% to the church for as long as I can remember, and in college I also started a mini-hospitality fund that I use anytime I come across a personal situation I want to be able to help out with.  This has helped send friends on mission trips and give anonymously to people who need it.  But this recent flood of abundance has really been nudging me for something a little deeper.

So I’m really excited to tell you that my hubs and I are going to start building an additional act of giving into the budget each month that will allow us to give to a global cause we feel called to support.  What I love about being able to do this is that we already give locally to people we meet and the church/community we live in, but we can also do some research on things that are happening around the world and give where we find something we want to support.

Anyway, I invited you on this journey of rising out of debt, and I feel like we reached our first rest stop along the way.  We have some other fun (and smart) things planned for the rest of the money, and I'll be sharing as always!

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