Category Archives: Books

Financial Peace

(Decided not to ruin my record of only posting once per full-moon…)

Tim and I are “financial” people, some might say. Tim is the CFO (how hot is that?) of United Cotton Growers, Co-Op and I run our tax and bookkeeping business, Bynum Financial Management, out of our home. I also take care of our church’s offering, paying bills and making deposits every week. So, we deal with money all the time. Tim mostly takes care of our personal finances himself, and I pop in and out and ask things like “well, WHY can’t we go to Hawaii this year, again?” Helpful, I know…

So, in January, our church offered a half-day family finances workshop and we thought we would be “good leaders” and make an example for our newly weds class and attend. We were the only ones from our class to show…and patted ourselves on the back for attending. Then…we actually¬†learned some things. We were thinking we might get some good investing tips or a new way to budget out of this. Wow, let’s just say it sort of showed us that we know nothing about personal finances and needed to make a change.

We started Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University in February. It is 13 weeks long and we are learning so much! I am so thankful for a church that offers classes like this so its members and the community can learn to live a much better life. One that helps us increase the margin for giving our time and our money to much better causes than vacations and filling our closets with more junk. Don’t get me wrong, I love clothes and Tim and I have big dreams for traveling and enjoying this world God gave us, BUT we’re just learning how to prioritize those things. They are not bad things, we just had them on the list in the wrong order.

I’d like to write some updates on this process as we go through it, much like my fab sister-in-law has done for their family. They are really living it out by tackling debt and teaching their sweet kids to save and give before buying for themselves. Tim and I are already noticing big changes in how we handle our money and even how we communicate about it. I feel really blessed that we can do this class together. If you can attend this course, a one-day workshop, or just read Dave’s book, I highly encourage you to!

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Book Review: Get Out of That Pit

(Disclaimer: This is actually a review of the journal based on the book Get Out of That Pit…went the cheap way!)

I started this book back in February, so I’ve been done for a while but have been waiting for a few good minutes to tell you all about it! Ladies, if you haven’t done a Beth Moore Bible study before, I sincerely recommend that you do! I knew she had some great things to say but kept thinking “oh, that’s for moms, or grandma’s or you know, anyone but me“. HA! Last fall the ladies Bible study at our church did a study called “Loving Well” by Beth. It was fantastic! Well, long story short I had been wrestling with the fact that I wasn’t learning God’s Word very much other than Sunday mornings…no quiet time and God was really calling to me, “Come back!” It’s been way too long. Tim and I have been focusing on strengthening our individual relationship with the Living God as well as our marriage (more on that in another post). I need a lot of structure and sometimes lot’s of help getting started. I did some research on the internet and thought “Well, I’ll do this one…” No real big commitment, huh? Like the disclaimer says I went the cheap route and only bought the journal. Little did I know, it would hold EXACTLY the words that my heart would need to hear…

First off, Beth Moore is a wonderful teacher. She knows how to talk to a woman without being saccharine sweet. The way she words things just made me say “WOW!” But, also, of course her words are helpful – they are TRUTH filled! This book/journal is filled with Biblical truths about what a pit can be for each different person, how we easily fall into it, how living in it feels, and, most gloriously, how to grasp onto Jesus, our Savior, and RISE out of that pit! Before beginning this, I could definitely equate my spiritual life to that of living in a pit. I definitely knew that’s how it felt but didn’t realize all the things that led up to that or how God had been working so hard to prepare me to be removed from the pit. It was eye opening. One quick example of my own personal pit: I had definitely replaced Jesus as my first love and had been suffering the consequences and shame for a while. Once I traced it back as far as I possibly could, admitted my specific sins that led me down that road and believed that the Almighty God truly does forgive me, it was like taking a breath of fresh air. Things have changed so much since that, I don’t have time to write it all down, but I hope to tell you more through more posts about my life out of the pit now.

Don’t get me wrong, it is not a “get fixed quick” type of book. I truly believe that through the “happenstance” of finding this book at B&N it was just exactly what God wanted me to read. He knows how my mind works, how I need the structure of a journal like this, how I need to be pried out of my comfort zone. The journal itself worked really well for me how it is laid out. There is a short devotional type point, a question relating to what it teaches, a question for relating it to your life specifically and then a section for prayer journaling. And of course, scripture to back it all up! I thoroughly enjoyed getting back into His Word and began to notice so many fascinating things through this study. I also am not great at journaling, but this encouraged me to do more of it and made it really easy.

If you’re struggling with anything, doubt, shame, depression, loneliness, or you just feel stuck in one place, you should give this book and journal a try. I believe Beth has been blessed with a talent for explaining things succinctly and in a new way. A way that will get your attention and make you see the Truth. Jesus wants us to live a life of freedom!