*Many of you have asked how my husband’s job search is going and how we are making it financially since it’s been so long. Here are just a few thoughts for those faithful followers.

Embracing this season during our “God Watchcontinues to teach me many things.
Another month has come and gone during this time of unemployment, and more than ever I am passionate in our desire for debt free living, and its importance in today’s financial world.

During this economy, life happens, unemployment rises, and houses are being foreclosed.
My heart breaks for the families that struggle through these situations with no support or financial advise. In the midst of the storm, it’s sometimes incredibly difficult to see the sunshine breaking through. I’ve been there years ago and know that pain.
Not only that, but financial tension is the leading cause of divorce.
Stress abounds around money decisions which multiplies the situation.

Yet even being part of that rising unemployment statistic, our family is thoroughly surviving.
Not because of a large salary, but due to the fact that we have had years of living below our means, being committed to Dave Ramsey’s financial baby steps (even before he had outlined them. ๐Ÿ™‚

I would be fooling you if I shared that I didn’t have nerve racking days.
Yes, moments when I assure the Lord I’m done being refined and wonder when this character building opportunity will end. (ha ๐Ÿ™‚ But dedicated to a commitment years ago to stack our emergency fund and save it for a season like this, we’re holding on financially.

We are also living off of our “attic fund” (the money that we saved to finally finish our third story). And yes, I know that we are beyond blessed that we even have more space to complete some day.

Admittedly, we were fortunate because my husband knew that his company was being bought out months before it happened. We began living like we were unemployed at the first moment of whispers, and then they offered to keep him on through the transition with a retention bonus. Yes, I had grandiose ideas that we would double dip my husband’s income since I was sure he’d be employed within months.
Many are not so fortunate to receive anything once they are let go…reality has hit.

Our bonus money is now past, we are in month eight of our God Watch, and if there are any bits of wisdom I can impart, it’s “stop spending money on any more “wants (consumer debt),” until you have paid off those credit cards and are beginning an emergency fund.”
For those that haven’t been able to hold on or are currently unemployed, of course this doesn’t begin to apply to you at all. Ten years ago, we were in a position where I literally had to charge my groceries for a small season…I couldn’t even begin to think of putting away for an emergency fund. Total grace here…

Sharing my heart on this issue is only for those of you who have a secure salary, yet wonder how long you could hold on if one or both of you lose your jobs tomorrow.

As my friend shared with me last week, even though her husband makes well into the six figures, if he lost his job, they would not be able to make it for more than one month.
The burden of debt she feels weighs on her, and she understands that’s no way to live.
There’s no time like the present than to assess that situation.

Debt is the leading cause of this country’s financial failures.
I can’t express to you the freedom that occurs and the burdens that will be lifted once you begin to walk down this road.
Stewarding your money more wisely, blessing others, modeling financial patience to your children, are all benefits that result through this chiseling process.

Begin living now by reducing your debt and taking those steps to financial security.
Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University, Crown Ministries and financial books by the late Larry Burkett top my recommended reading lists on personal finance issues.

Yikes, I need to take a breath. I rarely get on my high horse and that certainly was not my intent.
Personally living in the midst of financial UNcertainty brings out every frugal bone in my body.
People scoff at frugal living, but it is fabulous. Speaking from a lifetime of experience, I’m more convinced of that than ever. Frugality allows creative inspiration to thrive, and I think if you browse my archives, you will see that it permeates every thread of our family tapestry. ๐Ÿ™‚

So what is our plan?
Prayer, prayer, prayer… as we wait and watch to see what the Lord will do.
Then…my husband, who in the midst of this unemployment, is doing everything he can to bring in extra income through assisting people with taxes, finances etc.
We live in an amazing country where we can use our creative gifts and entrepreneurial spirit to think outside the box. Being a financial guy, there’s not much available for higher management in our area, so he’s slowly attempting to build his own company – Uncommon CFO.
Attempting to help five companies, who will hire him just one day a week, is his goal.
(Any guesses on how he came up with the name or why?)

For me, as my blog grows, advertising space helps offset some couponed groceries. ๐Ÿ™‚
After turning down speaking opportunities in the past due to home schooling, the Lord is opening that door for me – especially since my husband is working from home.
Sharing with women what I am passionate about brings such joy.
That opportunity never ceases to amaze me. Maybe I’ll meet you at your ladies’ group some day.

Thanks for joining us on this God Watch. I’ll start updating you once a month with some of the hands on practical life lessons that we’re learning through this process.
And no, I will not be one bit disappointed if I don’t have to give you any more updates…ever. ๐Ÿ™‚

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