8.28.2012

Bottom Line {August}

I'm sharing this for the record, and even though we're right on track for our payoff plan, that's not really what I'm writing about today. Today's Bottom Line post is about something bigger than paying off a mortgage or pulling into a driveway that doesn't belong to the bank. Today's post is about planning and trust and hope and dreams. For all you sticklers out there - you know, the really nosy ones who want to know the percentages - I'm including a current update on the mortgage process. Everyone else? Keep reading.

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If you've been around this thing called "life" for any amount of time, you know by now that it doesn't always go as planned. Sometimes you make a plan, take steps to reach a goal, and just when you start to ease into a routine - WHAM! Life throws you a curve ball. The real question is: what kind of ball player are you? 

Do you drop the bat and run for the dugout? Do you take the risk of getting a strike and swing at the thing? Or do you play it safe and hope it gets called a ball? 

A little over a month ago (right around the time when I was due to share the Bottom Line Update for July), life threw a speeding curve ball our way. It only took fourteen hours to change our plans. We talked and prayed, we sent texts and made phone calls, we reviewed budgets and considered worse case scenarios, and in the end, we took a swing and watched the ball fly over the fence. 

Life doesn't always stick to the plan. Sometimes you lose a job or gain an unexpected addition to your family. Sometimes an early morning tweet can change your life forever. If we had taken the time to write down what our life together would look like, some 13 years later it would be so full of whiteout and eraser marks, pencil add-ins and Sharpie do-overs, you wouldn't even be able to read it. Do you know why? Our plan isn't His plan.

God knew that humans would want to take over the blueprints of their life design process. He knew that we would misjudge distance, drop the ball, and make a general mess of everything in every inning we play. Do you know what else? He made a promise to us.

"For I know the plans I have for you," 
declares the LORD, 
"plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." 
{Jeremiah 29:11 - NIV}

Does that mean that each morning we will wake up in a bed of roses, open the curtains of our dream home to see the sun shining on our paid-for BMW, before we go to work at our dream jobs? Not on your life. But it does mean that we can leave the planning to Him, trusting that He will not lead us astray. When a new yard sign or morning tweet comes along, sending the best-laid plans into chaos, He isn't taken by surprise, even while we're scattering to catch the ball.

We caught one fly ball: our mortgage balance should be $0 by Thanksgiving. We have crunched numbers, balanced budgets, cut spending, and circled a date on the calendar, marked "Final Mortgage Payment". The financial discipline that we have been acquiring (after being convicted about our lack of it) is finally starting to pay off - just in time to take on something new.

Something bigger. 
Welcome Project 312.

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How are YOU doing with YOUR financial goals?
Care to share a dream you've worked for and achieved?

Next Bottom Line Update: 9/25/12

1 comment:

  1. We got one of those fly balls a few months ago. We've been working to get out debt, and finally paid all my medical debt off this past April - with only 1 big loan from my parents left to pay.
    And then I found out I was losing the disability income we'd be using for debts. So now, we're waiting (and thankfully my parents are incredibly gracious) and wondering when the next opportunity will come along to keep paying things off.

    ReplyDelete

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