Though unfortunate and not surprising, new data from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York has uncovered that Americans are more in debt now than ever before.
This year, household debts have skyrocketed to a record $17 trillion. Credit card balances alone, make up over $900 billion. For the first time in two decades, credit card debt hasn’t seen a decrease, which means, less consumers are paying off their credit card balances. It is possible that consumers are using their credit cards to make ends meet, as inflation continues to soar, but it’s also possible that Americans are simply not as committed to getting out of debt as they once were.
These sobering statistics should encourage Americans to regain control of our finances. It should also inspire us to educate our children and grandchildren about the importance of money management, so that they may avoid drowning in debt themselves in the future.
Generational wisdom is an invaluable tool to you and your family members. Having a conversation with your children or grandchildren about the mistakes you’ve made and the lessons you’ve learned in life, may not be the easiest conversation to have, but they will reap the rewards and it will possibly spare them from the same troubles. As we grow older, we gain more wisdom, and with life comes lessons; passing on that wisdom to your family is as invaluable gift.
Stewardship is one of the best defenses against overspending and accruing debt. When we view our finances as resources given to us by God, our habits can change. We realize that thoughtless spending and racking up unnecessary debt, is not financially responsible. Instead, we might begin to consider how to give intentionally and invest our money in a way that ultimately glorifies God.
This is a powerful perspective that your family may need to hear. It is not too late to change the trajectory of your family’s financial state or their legacies.
As you vacation with your loved ones this summer, , gather around a bonfire or relax poolside and make the most of your time together. Don’t allow your own reservations to deter you from broaching deeper topics of conversation, like money management.
For your loved ones, your insight may be a lighthouse, calling them in from the stormy seas that are drowning them in debt, and illuminating a better way forward, one that yields financial security and peace of mind for years to come.
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