>Kiss it, [insert name of credit card company here]!

>”What is your name?”
“Elizabeth W——-.”
“Thank you for calling. How can we assist you today?”
“I want to close my account.”
“Is there a reason you want to close it? Any problems?”
“No, just working on getting out of debt and this is our last card to close out of six.”
“Congratulations on paying off some debt. I would like to remind you that your card has no annual fee and you have a nice credit limit of $9,000.”
“No thanks, I would just like to close the account.”
“Okay, I understand. I would also like to remind you that you might want to keep it at a zero balance and just keep it open for emergencies.”
“That’s why I have an emergency fund. I would like to close the account please.”
“Okay, I understand. The account is closed and thank you for your business with us over the past four years.”
“Thanks! Have a great day.”

I used to get angry when I called customer service to close the account because of their persistence. This time I almost laughed all the way through. I forgot to ask about written confirmation, and also that it would show up on our credit report as closed per our request.

How do these people sleep at night? I guess most of America does not consider credit cards to be an issue. Really, if one has the responsibility to pay them off, then it’s fine, right? Not for us. We are both spenders. Dave Ramsey says that there is a spender and a saver. Hmm. We both like to spend money.

The guy told me to cut up my card. I didn’t get a chance to tell him that we did that eighteen months ago when we kissed that way of life goodbye.

I’m glad that at JoAnn’s, all we ask people to do is sign up for coupons through the mail. There’s no way I could ask people to sign up for a credit card.

Consider these verses:

“The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender.” Proverbs 22:7

“Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law.” Romans 13:8

>Anxiety = antithesis of faith

>This principle has really been impressed upon my spirit lately. I’m not even sure how to go about blogging about it simply because there’s just so much to say about faith and believing God and anxiety.

It is a command in Philippians 4 to not worry, but in everything, pray. From Blue Letter Bible:

It is not for us to be worried about tomorrow. Jesus says in Matthew that tomorrow has enough trouble of its own. There are so many scriptures that teach us to not worry or be anxious. The story of Joshua; the story of David. Jeremiah 29:11. “The steps of the righteous are ordered of the Lord.”

Here’s my logic, which you also might share: I can do everything in my power to be a responsible person and good steward of all I’ve been given (time, money, relationships, etc). But when truly following Jesus, His will will be done in the end; He truly holds the world. “Who by worrying can add an hour to his life?” If anything, the stress that comes from worry and anxiety will only shorten our lives.

In our video session tonight for Anointed, Transformed, Redeemed, Priscilla Shirer pointed out how important prayer is. It’s our most powerful weapon. David, in the same predicament more than once, prayed before each time. He didn’t rely on the same answer for both times, but instead sought a new word from the Lord.

When I pray about finances or Korea or my family, I need to pray more than once. If a problem arises in any of these areas, the Lord knows best on what approach I should employ to help solve the problem.

So, what does faith look like adjacent to worry?

If my car breaks down, I will [actually this happened tonight]…
think of every possible bad scenario. Call my dad, probably crying, and play out every solution in my mind. Panic.
stay calm. Call my dad, let him know what’s up. Call a friend to take me home. Call off work tomorrow and then plan to call Toyota tomorrow. No reason to worry about money since we are good stewards and have a special savings account for car repairs.

If a customer treats me poorly at work, I will…

…get upset internally, vent to a coworker later, and then when people ask about my day I will vent to each person and let them know just how poorly I was treated and how that person’s momma never taught them anything.
…treat the person with kindness, pray for them as they walk out the door [who knows what they’re going through to act like that] and let it go.

If I worry about the salvation of people I love, I will…

…cry out to God (and others) in frustration that I can’t get them saved and think about how badly their decisions are affecting their lives, as if I have control over what they’re doing.
…cry out to God asking Him to make Himself known to them in some way, through some person. Ask Him to help me be the best example I can be, and to give me a continued compassion. Pray continually.

If I feel the enemy trying to remind me of my past, I will…

…get upset that I sinned in an area I never thought I would. Ponder over and over how it could have possibly happened. Lament the example I was to others during that time and how it might affect their salvation.

…thank Jesus for His faithfulness to forgive, and to heal, and dwell in the love that He has for me. Pray about apologizing to others for my actions out of anger, anxiety, etc.

Think before hand of  how your reaction to trials will affect others, believers or not. How we react to life’s toughest circumstances says how much we trust God. Do we trust Him with 10%? Only certain people? Only a certain portion of our income? No. We need to trust Him 100%, every day and in every circumstance.

Obviously we are all works in progress. But as we know from Scripture He is faithful to complete the good work He began in all of us. We should not be discouraged by the prospect that we might fail. We will fail, many times. That is part of being human. But we can live blamelessly in the spirit of God by prayer and thanksgiving.

I am saying all this for my benefit as much as anyone else’s. I will say, though, that the Lord has brought me to a place of faith that I could not have seen six months ago. I saw only the tall wall in front of me. Now I’m standing on that plateau, looking down at where I came from. It wasn’t easy, but it’s been well worth the trip.