I have written about this topic before on my blog, but it’s been several years and so I wanted to talk about it again. We started Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University in January of 2010 at our church. And let me tell you it was a life-changer!
When we first got married in 2008, we had no budget and no plans for our money. We knew what we got paid and tried to stay within that limit, but it was hard because we weren’t keeping track of our spending. As a newly-wed couple we went out to eat a lot and at the end of each month we were always short money. We also tended to use our credit cards more often then we should have.
When I heard about our church hosting the Financial Peace University class, I was determined that we were going to attend. Somehow I got my husband to agree and even though it was $100. to attend and for all the supplies, it was totally worth it! We watched the videos in a classroom at church with other couples and laughed and learned. I had thought it was going to be boring money stuff, but Dave made it easy for everyone to understand.
The best part, is that I didn’t feel like I needed to nag my husband anymore about money and purchases, he agreed with Dave Ramsey and we both realized that we needed to start a budget before this baby came (I was about 6 months away from giving birth). We followed Dave Ramsey’s plan and throughout the next three years it has changed our lives. I honestly don’t know how we would have survived on what little military pay my husband gets without it.
We started a emergency savings plan, decided to use a cash system similar to the one that Dave Ramsey recommends, and made a budget that was do-able for OUR family. We started focusing on paying off our credit card debt, and I’m proud to say that we are coming up on our one year anniversary of absolutely NO credit card debt. We have not used our credit cards at all. And let me tell you…it feels amazing.
We are working on paying off our cars and our student loans and we still have a very long way to go, but the best thing is knowing what we have to spend and sticking to that budget. It’s also knowing that we have no credit card debt. It’s knowing that someday we will have a lot of this stuff paid off and hopefully we will be doing pretty well for ourselves. I am happy to say we are trying our best to use the money God gave us wisely.
Has it always been easy? If we were talking in person I would chime in with a loud, resounding NOPE! It’s hard having to stick to our small budget. I don’t get to go get monthly pedicures or go shopping at the mall very often, but it’s knowing that we have enough for what we need when we need it. I’m thankful that God brought this program into our lives and I know without a doubt that Dave Ramsey changed my life!
Looking to find out more? Check out my other posts about this program and how we make it work for our family.
There’s this quote that Dave Ramsey says and one that ends up becoming your mantra as you complete the program:
“If you live like no one else, LATER you can live like no one else.”
I love this. It means that yes, you are going to have to give some things up now. Yes, I don’t get to go shopping, attend a lot of parties or go out to eat a lot. I am not living like everyone else. BUT because of that – because I am saving and paying off debt – later I will be living like no one else. Our family will have no debt, we will have everything paid off, and we will have more money because of it and will hopefully be able to bless others because of it. We will be living like no one else.