By Matt Tullos
Stewardship Development Specialist, TBMB
What is normal? It’s pretty easy to answer that question. Our nation’s debt is over 21 trillion dollars. Average credit card debt is well over $6,000. So, if you want to be normal, just follow these seven easy steps and you’ll be totally normal! Seriously, I hope you don’t do any of these!
(1) When you reach your credit card limit move all the debt to a new credit card with lower interest rates. Set it and forget it. This works perfectly! You’ll be just like every other American. Before you know it you’ll have seven credit cards, with 15K on three, but you’ll have enough points you can stay at a two-star hotel at half price!
(2) Get the biggest house you can qualify for and then make minimum payments. Being house-poor is a great way to feel like everybody else. If you want to kick it up a notch, take out a home equity loan so that you can update your home with 200-year-old shiplap and granite in the third bathroom. Your friends will be super impressed and you get to make another monthly payment. Your home will be worth more and you’ll feel like you’re on HGTV! Your home is your biggest investment. Why not make it your biggest liability? Like we always say, “Home is where the heartache is.” Right?
(3) Give to the church according to how well the pastor preaches and the ministers meet your needs. Make church about your needs. Think of it as a payment for services rendered. If you don’t like how things are going up there, vote with your wallet.
Remember, it’s not spiritual. It’s personal. They’ll think twice about cutting your favorite program that makes you feel good about yourself. Keep telling yourself that the tithe is so Old Testament that giving 10% is irrelevant. Plus, your house costs a whole lot more than the average listing on the Ur real estate market when Abraham was around.
(4) Buy only the food and merchandise that are advertised. Watch a lot of TV, spend a lot of time on social media, and believe all the ads. The food commercials make you ravenously hungry for all the unique ways they’ve invented to stuff the maximum amount of cheese in pizza.
Another way to be normal is to join as many discount clubs as possible. Think of all the money you’ll be saving by spending all that money! Also, the more you eat, the more you’ll be able to take advantage of all the health insurance you have for your poor health! Don’t change your lifestyle. That’s too hard. Just take the pills.
(5) When you get feeling really bad about your debt, soothe your anxieties with ice cream. This is such a no-brainer. If you ever get to feeling down about how much you owe, try two scoops of Rocky Road with sprinkles. If ice cream’s not your thing, order a venti vanilla latte with an extra shot of espresso just for good measure. That should keep you satisfied for at least 15 minutes.
(6) Think of your car as an investment that appreciates over time. The fancier car you drive, the more your friends will believe you are doing great!
Plus, if you’re upside down on your car you can always trade up and tack the loan on the next vehicle. Fool yourself into believing that your car will be a classic in 20 years. That’ll take the pinch out of that 84-month loan.
(7) Buy your kids whatever they ask for so they’ll love you more. By now you are working extra to make monthly payments so don’t forget to buy your kids extra stuff to replace lost quality time with you. They’ll appreciate it. Whatever “it” is. Nothing says, “I love you!” more than buying junk for the kiddos.
These are seven easy steps. They are easy as rolling down the Smoky Mountain Chimney Tops! Yikes!
The moral of this column is simple. Normal is not always best.