How often do you worry about your finances? For me, a couple of years ago I realized I was not trusting God with my long-term finances, specifically when it came to tackling my debt monster. There was actually a time in my life where I would check my bank accounts multiple times a day, then I would check the balances on my student and car loans, it felt like I was constantly doing the math in my head trying to find out how soon I could pay my loans off. Don’t get me wrong, a little sense of urgency when it comes to paying off debt can be great to keep you motivated but don’t obsess over it, like I was! The “letting go” part was particularly hard for me. I wasn’t saving any money (or time!) by obsessing over my finances and I surely wasn’t trusting God in the process. My obsessing was not resulting in any extra cash to put towards my debt, it was just stealing my peace.
Eventually I gained peace by taking the time to create a financial plan and deciding to “let it go” and let the plan do its job. As part of the plan I actually decided to check my loan balances only at set intervals and again when anything major changed with my finances. For example, I spent a lot of time rethinking my plan when I got married and when my employment situation changed. I also set up all my loan payments to happen automatically, so that I didn’t have to stress about remembering to pay and subsequently fight anxiety over the amount of interest I was paying every month. Once I knew that my automatic loan payments were working correctly, I promised myself I wouldn’t check the overall loan balance unless it was time for me to review my financial plan, this “letting go” part was actually crucial for my freedom from debt related anxiety. If you don’t know how to make a financial plan, talk to someone who does!
Scripture basically tells us that worrying is a waste of time , so now I can spend that time taking care of myself, developing relationships, and getting closer to God. I’m still working on my debt, but I’m deciding to trust God with my finances by letting it go. This gives me the peace to not be miserably anxious until I’m debt-free.