Recently, we received the last of our student loans to get us through his graduation date. Along with that, we had the privilege (hope you can sense my sarcasm) of seeing the grand total of loan money that we have received over our four years. Now, we aren't dumb, we did make the choice for me to stay home with our girls, and we know that education is a worthy use of our funds, but it is still an overwhelming experience to see on paper, a very large sum of money, owed to someone else.
Since that time, we have a renewed spirit of getting out of our debt as quickly as possible, and are more focused than ever on living providently. Of course, it is easier said than done, but as we anticipate our move and a new job, we are practicing the art of "joyfully living within our means."
Our talks and plans reminded me of a wonderful talk given by Elder Hales in April of 2009 entitled, "Becoming Provident Providers Temporally and Spiritually." I put my favorite advice from the talk above (given by his wife, by the way), but the rest is filled with wonderful ways of becoming temporal and spiritual provident providers for your family.
He explained, "I have learned that the three most loving words are “I love you,” and the four most caring words for those we love are “We can’t afford it.”
Elder Hales also said, becoming a provident provider is, "joyfully living within our means, being content with what we have, avoiding excessive debt, and diligently saving and preparing for rainy-day emergencies."
Regardless of whether we can afford things or not, one thing I know, is that it is our responsibility as parents to not only teach our children, but to show by example how to be provident providers. Soon enough they might be saying, "we can't afford it."
How about you mamas, how are you learning to joyfully live within your means? I'd love to hear any insights.
P.S. We've got a weekend wide open, and I couldn't be happier. Yard work and a possible camp fire are on the tentative schedule, along with sunny skies. I'm also making my way through this new book, and can't wait to tell you all about it come Monday.