I receive lots of questions and comments about whether or not our frugal lifestyle is worth it. My answer is yes!
- It allows me to be a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom. Yes, I could get a job, and we could have more stuff. But, that’s not what’s important to us. I know many people think we’re depriving our children, some of them have been so bold as to tell me so. But, I can assure you my children don’t feel deprived and they are not. Third world children are deprived. Motherless and fatherless children are deprived. My boys with a safe and secure home, all the clothing and food they need, lots of love, and lots of toys and videos and books? They are not deprived.
- We want to teach our children to be content. We want our children to know that happiness is not dependent upon having the latest greatest toys. Yes, we could tell them that, all day long while providing them with the latest greatest toys, but I think it loses effectiveness. So, we live a simpler lifestyle, within our means. That is what we want to model for our children.
- Freedom. I enjoy having a budget that allows me to know where our finances stand. We look forward to the day that we will be out of debt, and not have God’s money mortgaged. We look forward to when our money will be ours to do with what we need to do, and what God calls us to do, rather than using it to pay interest on debt. Debt is an obligation, and by the grace of God, we want to be able to pay all of our debts. Debt that is not repaid is stealing. Plain and simple.
With that said, here are a couple of things that are not worth it to us:
- We won’t stop tithing. I read a comment on another blog the other day that said basically, “If you’re trying to get out of debt, why would you still tithe? Why not use that money to get out of debt?” Being debt free isn’t worth giving up something that we feel called by God to do. Furthermore, God’s word promises blessing in return for tithing (Malachi 3:10-11). God has shown us time and again how He is faithful to provide, and how the tithes and offerings we give to Him will come back to us when we need it. Tithing is NOT wasted money.
- We won’t work extra jobs. One of the things Dave Ramsey recommends (at least on the page I read a while back) was to get extra jobs, as many as necessary, even if you’re working all the time, in order to pay off debt faster. Time is where we draw the line. Because, we are not promised tomorrow. If our world ended today, or tragedy struck our family, we could live with knowing that we didn’t have the best material possessions. However, we could not live with the regret from spending these days and years with our children working all the time. In fact, time is one of the key reasons we embrace this frugal lifestyle. These days are precious and we will never get them back!
This is my list. What about yours? Is frugality worth it? To what extent? Join the conversation below.