Thursday, March 6, 2014

Fiancial Peace: It is more than just finances!


The year I graduated college I had over $27,000 in student loans and nearly $5,000 in shared debt with my husband. We were both working at the time and felt a bit overwhelmed with our finances. We were still new in our marriage and roles as parents and money was not something we knew how talk about. Really, we didn’t know much about money at all.

We knew about Dave Ramsey and had heard about his books but it wasn’t until January of 2010 that we decided to find a Financial Peace University class to attend together. As it turned out, a local church was offering it. Not being members of the church, we decided to attend one of the services before starting the class. So Sunday January 31st our family attended church for the first time in 2 years. We signed up for the class, which actually started on Valentine’s Day. Not exactly romantic. As it turns out though it was the start of a love story. Something amazing happened. Because of Financial Peace University we went to church every Sunday for a year after that.

Financial Peace is a class that has changed our finances. It changed our marriage. It changed us. But it also changed our faith. It opened the door for us to become a part of a church. FPU provided us with a plan to real peace.

Dave Ramsey’s plan for financial peace is a blueprint that can help any family succeed. Married or unmarried, young or old, unemployed or working, no matter your income or debt level, it has the tools everyone needs. It changes your perspective, it pushes you to be accountable and it encourages you to chase dreams.
The following is a list of the 9 Lessons in FPU:

·  Super Saving

·  Relating With Money

·  Cash Flow Planning

·  Dumping Debt

·  Buyer Beware

·  The Role of Insurance

·  Retirement and College Planning

·  Real Estate and Mortgages

·  The Great Misunderstanding

From the list, it is clear that there is something in FPU for everyone. Each lesson teaches very important lessons.

The great thing though is that when you go through the class you get to participate in group discussions. Members are encouraged to share whatever they would like. No pressure, no budgets criticized, just discussion.  I usually get the most out of this part of the class. Because every family’s personal finances are different I can really learn a lot from everyone else in the group.

The couple that is saving for a big vacation or a house may have some tricks to teach me about saving money. The couple with grandchildren may have some insight to offer me about how to prepare for retirement. The single mom may have some advice on saving for college on a small budget. The family overwhelmed with medical bills may have suggestions I need to listen to about insurance.  Often times I find myself reevaluating my budget throughout the class and wondering what I could do different with our finances, what I could plan different.

Most importantly, the class encourages me to make changes that allow me to live different. You live like no one else so that later you can LIVE like no one else. It is about building wealth, not just so you can enjoy it yourself, but also so you can give wealth to others. Financial peace becomes something greater than just your own finances.

When whole churches build and give wealth like no one else, they change the entire way a community operates. When families make different choices together as a team it changes an entire family tree.

Brent and I took the class 4 years ago and have no regrets. We have taken the class twice and will now join the class as leaders for the 3rd time at the end of this month. We are very close to being debt free and leading Financial Peace is our way of paying it forward. We really believe this class changes everything. Even if a single family attended we would be happy because that is how important to us. Financial Peace is something we want to share with everyone. It is a blessing we hope to share with all.

As this class begins I have three things to ask.

1) Would you consider attending? 

Financial Peace is better when everyone gets involved. I believe the more community involvement we have the stronger this program will be. Check out the class details online. Bonus: There is childcare and I will bring snacks. Can't beat that!

2) Also, would you consider sharing the class information with friends and family here in Cedar Rapids?

Would you invite them to attend with you? Maybe you can't attend or maybe you are not interested, but do you know someone who would enjoy this class?
Share the class details on Facebook. Share this blog post even. Direct them to Lovely Lane's website. Offer to attend the orientation on Monday March 10th with them if they are not sure if they want to attend. Maybe you have even taken the class before. Tell them your story. Help them feel welcome. You can even give them my email or cell phone number. I would happily answer any questions someone might have.

3) Last and most important, would you pray for us?

Send us some happy thoughts. We would love to have your blessing as we lead this class. Even if you don't attend our church and live far away we would love to have your support. Prayer is powerful and we appreciate the love and support for all of our friends and family.

God Bless & Thank you! 

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