I think being an adult is really great. There is a sense of freedom that I never knew until I became an adult; I love having that freedom. But when you become an adult, certain things are expected of you…things like paying your bills, making money to pay said bills, not spending more money than you have, etc. And if you do those things (plus some others), you might be considered a responsible adult.
Some days I wish my husband and I were okay with not being that kind of adult.
If we were not that kind of adult, our lives would be a lot different…and we would have a lot more debt.
We would have bought our kayaks the first time we saw them in the store. We would have purchased a LoveSac in the Mall of America. We would have paid $200 for a couple pairs of toe shoes. We would have spent way too much money on a couch. We would max out our credit cards, so we could visit Germany in the summer.
But, we are those kind of adults. We are the kind that pays bills on time and weighs big decisions. We are sometimes the adults that miss out on some things now, so we can have them later. And so far that has worked out for us.
Almost every time we have wanted to buy something or spend a lot of money on something but chose not to do so because we didn’t think it would be wise, financially, God has honored our patience and given us those things we wanted.
When we were first married and looking for furniture to fill our home, we found the perfect couch. The only thing we didn’t like about it was the price tag – more than $2,000! We walked away and forgot about it. Then, last year, we were able to buy the exact couch we had looked at from a friend for only $300!
Our two kayaks, the exact ones we wanted to buy that day in Scheels, came to us gently used with all of the accessories and storage for what one would have cost us (not including the necessary accessories) the day we first saw them. We had to wait a year, but we saved more than $1,000 because we waited. And because we waited, we were able to save up and pay cash.
We didn’t have our toe shoes the first season we got to use our kayaks, but because we waited on them (because, really, who can justify paying $100 for a pair of toe shoes?!), we only paid $40 for both pairs.
I first discovered LoveSac as a teenager. I imagined how amazing it would be to curl up on the giant bean bag chair and watch movies (Netflix didn’t have instant streaming, yet!), but I was a poor teenager, so I couldn’t afford one. As an adult, I decided, “who the heck pays that much for a giant bean bag chair?!” I had come to terms with the fact that I would probably never own one. Then one day, some friends decided the LoveSac they had didn’t fit in their house anymore. They had bought it used years before, but it was still like new! I jumped at the opportunity, and we got it for the beautiful price of…FREE! Seriously. It is probably the best gift I’ve been given in ages!
A few weeks ago, my husband’s uncle offered us a chance to stay in his flat in Germany for next to nothing. There may never be an opportunity to visit Germany for so cheap ever again. Although the lodging would be cheap, getting there is not, so we sadly turned down the offer because there are more pressing things we need to tend to. We just can’t justify spending $4,000 on airfare alone. If we weren’t responsible adults, we would have said, “Yes!” We would have used our credit cards – used money that wasn’t ours and that we couldn’t pay off immediately – and bought the tickets that day. In June, we would have packed our bags and gone on a adventure. But, again, we are responsible adults.
Saying I’m disappointed is probably an understatement. I love traveling. I love getting to see new places and experience God’s handiwork. But I also love not having crazy amounts of debt. After a couple weeks of being disappointed and trying to think of possible (responsible) ways that we could make it work, I accepted the reality of the situation. And as soon as I did that, God reminded me of everything He had done for us in the past.
He reminded me that when I wait, when I am a good steward of what He has given me, He blesses it. So, while I’m sad to miss out on the opportunity this year, I have hope that maybe next year, or maybe in 5 years, there will be something even better. And even if there isn’t, I know that being a good steward and living within our means honors the Lord, and that’s enough for me.