One of the big motivating factors behind our family's decision to move out to the country and adopt a simpler way of life was our conviction to get out of debt. One of these days I'll write a more in depth post on the foundational biblical principles that have influenced Amy's and my approach to money and possessions since getting married. For now, suffice it to say, we have been tirelessly working with "gazelle intensity," as Dave Ramsey likes to say, to escape the expert marksmanship of lenders who would have us as their interest-earning trophies (Proverbs 6:4–5; 22:7):
"Give your eyes no sleep
and your eyelids no slumber;
save yourself like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter,
like a bird from the hand of the fowler."
"The rich rules over the poor,
and the borrower is the slave of the lender."
For over 10 years, we took radical steps to reduce the principal balance of our debts. The biggest step was to sell our nicer-quality, suburban-located, corner-lot home with it's 30 year mortgage. In its place, we bought an affordable tract of overgrown pasture and timberland 30 miles outside of the city. There I built (with my own hands) with the equity from our suburban house sale a humble, one bathroom, dutch colonial-style house with very few amenities to start out with. I can write another post later to chronicle that entire wilderness adventure, including our first winter on the property which is definitely a story to tell! But, the journey also involved selling vehicles, eliminating TV subscriptions, learning to alternatively heat and cool our home, becoming couponing experts (more so Amy than me), eating out less, finding our entertainment at the local library, and many other game-changing family reforms. We also disciplined ourselves to apply every spare penny (whether earned by us or gifted to us) to go toward the outstanding balance.
A decade of hard work and hope-filled prayers later, we paid off our final debt on our new land (financed through the good folks at Farm Credit of Arkansas), and are proud to announce..."WE'RE DEBT FREE"!
Visiting Financial Peace Plaza
No More Promissory Note!