I am exhausted trying to make it to the end of the month while remaining within my budget. I feel like inflation is robbing me of more than my money. I am losing my joy every day that this continues.
Exhausted by Inflation
Dear Exhausted by Inflation,
I wish I could tell you that it will soon be over, but since no man knows the future, I steer clear of trying to predict it. We can only look at the facts and adapt to the reality of our circumstances today. My hope is that this reply will help bring back your joy.
Inflation with Risk of Recession
We are experiencing both inflationary times and a risk of contraction of economic activity. This can cause great fear and uncertainty. Consumer confidence is shaken when unemployment rises, businesses close, and the stock market grows increasingly volatile.
Putting the Brakes on Inflation
On Wednesday, November 2nd, the Fed raised interest rates another .75 percentage points, pushing borrowing costs to the highest level since the Great Recession. More could lie ahead. Could the effort to bring down the cost of living plunge us into a recession? Maybe. The bright side is that savers will benefit from higher rates on their accounts. It is a difficult balance to curb inflation without tipping into a recession, but this is a clear sign that our government wants to contain inflation. Maybe the end is in sight.
Making It to the End of the Month
A Forbes survey of consumers reports that current economic conditions have caused 38% to dine out less, 36% to adjust their budgets, 33% to reduce the miles they drive, and 32% to purchase cheaper or different items than usual. In addition, 23% of Gen-Z consumers plan to take on another job.
If you spend less than you earn, you need not fear a recession or prolonged inflation. How is it possible to spend less than you earn? You either have to earn more money or cut expenses. Pray for wisdom to make wise decisions. Like the Apostle Paul, we can learn to be content in any circumstance, even in the midst of sacrificing comfort.
“Whoever works his land will have plenty of bread, but he who follows worthless pursuits will have plenty of poverty. A faithful man will abound with blessings, but whoever hastens to be rich will not go unpunished.” (Proverbs 28:19–20 ESV)
The Harvard Business Review offers the following tips:
Reduce Debt and/or Increase Income
We only have today, so regardless of our circumstances or what may be looming in the future, we should find reasons to rejoice. Every morning that I wake up, I say this verse in my head or sometimes aloud: “This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.” (Psalm 118:24 ESV). I then go about doing my duty as faithfully as I can, knowing that He will get me through every storm. I hope your joy returns today.
If credit card debt is adding extra stress during these uncertain economic times, consider contacting Christian Credit Counselors. They are a trusted source of help toward financial freedom.
This article was originally published on The Christian Post on November 11, 2022.
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