High blood pressure isn’t the only silent killer in America today. Debt is slowing and maliciously killing our finances, both as a nation and individually. As each generation is born, the pressure and intensity of borrowing money has become harder to resist. Debt, money or property which one person is obligated to pay to another (lender), is robbing Christians of a freedom God intends for everyone to enjoy.
Being realistic about what debt is will help us make sound decisions as to whether we borrow money and, if so, in what circumstances. Debt comes in many disguised forms. With an enticement to live up to a false American dream that has been pitched throughout the past generations, an entitlement to have what one wants, and to pay for it later and spend with little regard as to priority, has taken over our American and Christian way of thinking.
The ease and availability of the credit card is the biggest culprit for one suddenly aware and realizing that a huge hole of debt has been dug. Most of us have been bombarded with credit card company’s attempts to get us to carry their card. In a paperless motivated society it is hard to avoid having a card. But the truth of their real use should be discovered. Credit cards are debt. When we use them it creates a debtor-lender relationship, and we enter into an agreement to pay back the amount of what we’ve charged. Many times it is paid back several times over. Some think credit cards are simply a way of living. Without full truth and proper restraint in place, the truth is quite the contrary. Credit cards have become the quickest means of a dying financial life.
Paying back what is owed comes at great costs. The obvious cost is interest charged on what is owed. This is a percentage that is taken from every payment made on a loan, which goes to the lender for borrowing the money to the debtor. This can come at a very high price, especially given a high rate of interest and a long period of time taken to pay off the debt. Credit card companies are known for charging very high rates of interest. These rates easily range into the 20 percent range and higher.
Debt comes at a high cost of added stress to a family. Many people use credit cards to make the payments that seem normal in every person’s life. These can include car payments, house payments, cell phone bills and the like. When one tries to carry such a load it may require longer work hours, an extra job, or both spouses required to work to try to make these payments. This takes away from family time, which is detrimental to the family dynamics.