Have you ever had a rough week or two with money?
It seems like the expensive things like to group themselves together on our timelines. And this past week it was the Lewis family’s turn to spend some money.
I decided to take care of some overdue basic maintenance things on my house. I hired an A/C company to come by and service our air conditioning unit. What I was hoping to be a $75 service call turned out to be a $400 repair.
My state inspection was due on my car and sure enough I knew that my tires didn’t have enough tread and needed to be replaced. I shopped around for a deal and wrote the check for $700 on a new set of tires.
Sara’s car hasn’t been cooling very well and now that it’s August in Texas we couldn’t put it off any longer. $400, some freon, and a new fan later her car car cools just fine and my son will stop sweating in the back seat.
My grandmother passed away. She was 92 and we’ve been expecting this for a while. No need to be sad, she’s with Jesus now!
But I booked plane tickets from DFW to Central Ohio just 2 days before the flight. There goes another $500, and it was only that cheap because I found a deal. I also found a deal for a rental car that totaled $80. It turns out it was also NASCAR weekend in town so finding a hotel room meant spending $200/night.
All in all, it was an emotional and expensive week.
But several years ago a week like this would’ve been devastating for us. I would’ve maxed out a credit card. I might not have attended my grandmothers funeral because I didn’t have any cash or credit available. I would’ve made quick and catastrophic financial decisions as I was going through a week filled with emotions.
But on my flight home I found an overwhelming sense of peace. I didn’t hesitate to pay for plane tickets. When I found out hotel rooms would be double what I initially thought I didn’t panic. When a part on my A/C unit needed fixed, I just wrote the check.
This is the benefit of not being a slave to debt anymore. This is the benefit of living on a budget and spending less than you make. This is the benefit of working hard, saving for the future and having an emergency account in place.
Did I spend a lot of money last week? Yes. Was it a difficult and emotional week? Yes. Did I throw a long term financial crises on top of my emotional crises and grieving? Nope.