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Archive for August, 2011

Credit cards and alcohol

Posted by Chance on August 23, 2011

Dave Ramsey has a lot of good financial advise.  However, he does not believe in credit card usage whatsoever.  Now, looking at his article he makes a lot of good points, and I can’t disagree with most of them them. I do believe it is possible to use a credit card, reap the benefits, and pay the balance off.  That being said, I do agree with his point about “When you pay cash, you can “feel” the money leaving you. This is not true with credit cards.”

However, my pastor said something yesterday that was quite wise.  Christianity is about principles, not rules.  When you focus on following rules and not principles, you can miss out on following the voice of God. I feel that by saying “credit cards are prohibited”, it amounts to legalism.

Also, the arguments I’ve heard against credit cards seem familiar.  “Credit cards destroy people and families.  So many people use them irresponsibly.  People can’t handle credit cards”.  These sound very similar to arguments against alcohol.  Some Christian denominations believe in abstinence altogether.

I do believe abstinence from both can be a very wise decision for many people.  Unfortunately many people cannot handle either and end up harming their lives.  But I believe a key principle in the Christian walk is that of discernment and hearing God’s voice.  My pastor said it well.  “People want rules, they don’t want to listen for God’s voice.”

I’m not saying that is why Dave Ramsey is saying to not use credit cards, or that he is suffering from legalism, or anything like that.  And after reading the article I want to evaluate how I use credit cards.  But the philosophy of  “never use them, never ever” is not one I agree with, and doesn’t necessarily apply to everyone.

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Posted in Christianity, Philosophy | 4 Comments »

Thoughts on college

Posted by Chance on August 22, 2011

So, as I was reading an OSU sports blog (one I greatly recommend visiting if you like Oklahoma State sports), the blogger mentioned that today is the first day of school for many college students, including OSU.  The blog had a poll regarding how we feel now that summer is over, and one of the answers was “I have a job, I’d walk a 5k on broken glass for 1 more semester of college”.

As someone who now has a job and is out of college, this is a viewpoint to definitely consider.

College was a lot of fun.  I was on my own and pretty much independent.  I wasn’t a party animal at all, but I rarely went to bed before 1 or 2 am, and the dorms (sorry, residence halls) were a lot of fun, as I hung out in the Parker Hall lounge or played foosball.  Although I was flat broke, usually going to Denny’s to order a side of fries, I had a lot of fun.

College was also a great time of mental stimulation.  Whether it was the classroom, an opinion article in the O’Colly, or a discussion in the lounge, I was faced with all sorts of viewpoints different from my own and had my faith challenged.  It was in college that I started to have a passion to follow along with my aptitude for math, and learned basic ideas about how the universe worked in Physics 1.  It was also then that, through the O’Colly and some comic strips posted on someone’s door, that many libertarian ideas of mine started to take root, although lying dormant for 4 years.

Most importantly, I met my wife there.  I remember when I first met her, although we didn’t start dating for a year after that.  She is definitely the greatest thing that happened to me at OSU (although 2002 Bedlam was pretty sweet too).  I sometimes look at my life and feel that, if this was a movie, she’s my happy ending.

That takes me to where I am now.  Now I have a job.  I can afford to order a full meal at Denny’s.  This stage of life doesn’t have the spontaneity of college life, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything.  I now have my wonderful wife and two great kids.  I also have a job that I enjoy, one that challenges me.  While college was great, and sometimes I miss what it offers, that was in the past, a season of my life.  Now I enjoy this one.

Posted in Culture | 2 Comments »