Archive - July, 2008

I Can Not Believe I Get To Do This!

After nearly two years of pursuing this crusade to help others accomplish far more than they ever thought possible with their personal finances I still can not believe I get to do this for a living!

In less than two years, this thing has went from a mere passion and a book manuscript to a full-service, full-tilt crusade.

If you are preparing to teach about personal finances at your church or business organization, I would love to be able to partner with you!  It is my passion and call to help people win with their money.  Why?  Because when people are financially free they are much more likely to go do EXACTLY what they have been put on this earth to do!

This stuff FIRES ME UP! 

Here are options that are available to help you implement a finance curriculum at your church or business.

  • Speaking  I love to speak and teach on personal finances.  But be ready for a FIRED-UP, high-energy speech as I am more than a little PUMPED to teach people about money management.  You can watch me speak HERE.
  • Experiences  Some call them classes.  Others call them seminars.  I call them experiences.  Why?  Because I teach PRACTICAL tools that can be immediately applied.  I do not teach theoretical and hypothetical material.  The tools that I teach are what Jenn and I personally did to win with our money.  The two-hour experience is the most popular – Financial Learning Experience, but the six-hour Financial Freedom Experience has been very successful too.
  • Group Study Course  This six session study is based on my book, I Was Broke. Now I'm Not.  I have found that my home group is where I am challenged AND held accountable.  Accountability is so huge when it comes to making the tough decisions that might be necessary to win with money.  Find out more about the Group Study HERE.
  • Financial Counseling Training  In the Financial Counseling Experience, I train people to use the process that we have used here at NewSpring Church to provide one-on-one financial counseling to over 400 people each year!  If you are interested in providing financial counseling, this is a great place to start!  Since I am an engineer, you can bet that this training will involve a checklist or two.
  • Personal Finance Book  In I Was Broke. Now I'm Not., I share my family's story of walking out of financial mismanagement and into financial freedom.  THEN I share exactly HOW we did it.  I share exactly HOW to use the tools and all of the tools are available FREE through the web site.  Find out more about the book HERE.

You can contact me HERE.  


Perry Noble’s First Book!

Many of you know that Perry Noble is a fantastic leader, speaker, teacher, and writer.  But did you know that he has already published a book?

Perry wrote a book back in 2002 called "Blue Prints – How to build Godly Relationships", and it is AWESOME!

Here is what is great about this book.

  • NewSpring Church was born out of the material taught in this book!  Back in 1998, Perry began leading a student Bible study at Anderson University to teach students how to build Godly relationships.  This Bible study led to the launch of NewSpring Church.  Blue Prints was written based on those Bible studies.
  • Perry is passionate about this subject.  If you have ever listened to Perry teach, you KNOW how passionate he is about developing Godly relationships.
  • Easy, fast read.  If you are like me, you want a book to be challenging, entertaining, and a fast read.  Check. Check. Check.
  • My family has been directly impacted by this book.  I had a family member who was involved in a challenging relationship.  For some reason, he picked up this book and read it in one sitting.  It rocked his world.

So, here is the deal.  I found a couple of boxes of these books lying around here at NewSpring.  They are very limited in number (I have located a couple hundred).

If you want to pick up a copy, it is available via for $11.99 or via the Blue Prints website for $10.99 (free shippping).

You can see Perry talking about the book back in 2002 (and a lot of other current NewSpring happenings) HERE.

What is going on?!!!

Today must be a day set aside to encourage the crusade!

Cornerstone Church in Auburn, Alabama is teaching a finance series called Cha-Ching.  As they prepared for the series, they decided to offer I Was Broke. Now I'm Not. as a resource for people.  Jack Fisher contacted me and purchased a CASE of books.  That is 81 books.  Well, they are two weeks into the series and they are nearly out of books and are ordering more!

The feedback they have been receiving from people who have read the book has been incredible.   In fact, Jack sent me this comment this morning when ordering more books.

"Another great Sunday with your book. The feedback is consistently excellent with everyone saying that it is something they can start on right away."

When I wrote this book, my top priority was to make it PRACTICAL and ABLE TO BE APPLIED IMMEDIATELY.  It is always good to get feedback that shows it happening!

THEN, Jack sent me another e-mail today.  It blew me away.

Right after I emailed you our local DARE Officer walked in talking about how he and his wife are fired up about how the book has changed them in just a few weeks. I attached his picture. That's what gets me going.

Jack – I am so thankful for the kind words and feedback.  Even more, I am FIRED UP to see that this crusade is helping people accomplish far more than they ever thought possible with their personal finances!  When people have their finances in order, they are much more likely to go do EXACTLY what they have been put on this earth to do.  And THAT FIRES ME UP!
I love partnering with churches to help them teach strong financial principles.  I L.O.V.E. IT!  Have I said lately that I can't believe I get to do this for a living? 

Nice feedback on “I Was Broke. Now I’m Not.”

John Bartlett had some really kind words about I Was Broke. Now I'm Not.

I am so humbled by this type of feedback.  I am a teacher through and through and any teacher will tell you that seeing others carry the message on to others is the ultimate compliment.

Thanks, John, for the kind words.

You can read his post HERE.

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WINNER: Personal Finance Art Contest

I am proud to announce that L.R. was the winner of the Personal Finance Art Contest!  You can click on the artwork below to see a full-size version. 

Sangl's Interpretation of L.R.'s Artwork

L.R. identified Credit Cards, Overspending, and High Interest Debt as the cause of a first bankruptcy.  Then the credit cards came back (financial behavior was not changed) and another bankruptcy happened.

L.R. then identified the causes of both bankruptcies and made lasting changes that will  result in a bankruptcy-proof life.

Thanks for the great artwork L.R.!  Your prize pack consisting of a signed copy of I Was Broke. Now I'm Not, a Financial Freedom Experience T-Shirt, and of course this blog post is on its way!

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Is Your Pastor Managing Money Well?

As I travel and teach at a variety of churches, it is always important for me to understand if the pastor and the church staff are managing their money following biblical principles.  I mean, if the pastor is blowing all of their money without a plan, 100% financing everything, and unable to say "NO!" to a purchase, then it is impossible for them to stand up with any credibility and teach biblical principles such as:

Proverbs 13:22 A good man leaves an inheritance for his children's children. (Long-term saving!)

Proverbs 13:11 … He who gathers money little by little makes it grow. (Invest!)

Proverbs 22:7  The rich rule over the poor and the borrower is servant to the lender. (Avoid debt.)

Romans 13:8  Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another … (Always pay off debts that you owe!)

Not too mention the Parable of Talents (Matthew 25:14-30 – sound money management) and Giving (Malachi 3).

I have said it many times in the Financial Counseling Experience training that the number one reason NewSpring Church has a successful financial counseling ministry is the fact that Perry (senior pastor) lives this stuff!

So the question today is:  If you are a pastor or a church leader, are you managing money the way that God commands you to?

The question for everyone else (and today's poll question) is:

My pastor manages money (to the best of their ability) as the Bible directs
View Results

If you need help getting your finances in order, the financial counseling team at NewSpring Church is passionate about helping people.  You can request financial counseling HERE
I am also passionate about helping churches and businesses take their finances to the next level.  If your church or business is interested in having me come and teach, you can contact me HERE.

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A Great Question To Ask

I had the opportunity to meet with Chris Kakaras this week.  He is a young man who is passionate about helping people manage their money God's way.  One of the key groups that he speaks to are college students, and I had the opportunity to review some of his materials when we met.

There was a section of questions in his training that really caught my eye.  It was good.  Very good.

Here is one of the questions (participants in the class are required to answer these questions).

Did you eat today?  YES    NO

If YES is the answer, then you are blessed and have enough.

So basic, but SO TRUE!

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Don’t Do This

I wonder how many people are currently at risk of having an article like THIS ONE written about them?

This is why I am in favor of "cash envelopes" and not "cash socks".

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Financial Learning Experience and FREE DOWNLOADS!

Financial Learning Experience

I am PUMPED to be teaching the Financial Learning Experience again here at NewSpring Church Anderson Campus on Saturday morning, August 2nd, from 9:00AM – 11:00AM.  There is limited seating this time around, so invite your friends and family but register NOW.

The class is free, but you need to register in advance.  To register, fill out the contact form HERE and say that you "want to attend the Financial Learning Experience on August 2".  If you are registering more than one person, be sure to include each person's name in the contact form.  You will receive a confirmation e-mail back from Katie saying that you have been assigned to the class.

I Was Broke. Now I'm Not. Group Study Guide


Home Group Study

I am on a crusade to help others accomplish far more than they ever thought possible with their personal finances.  I am on a mission to teach 100,000 people by October 2011 (first five years of doing this full-time).  This home group study helps allow me achieve the mission.

I am a huge believer in learning within the bounds of a home group.  It is where I can engage in vigorous debate, be challenged in my own personal thoughts, and be held accountable to personal goals.

I can't wait to hear the stories of life-change that take place all because small groups of people decided together to take their finances to the next level.

Gift Cards – A good deal?

The Saving Freak wrote an excellent post about gift cards becoming a risky purchase.

Have you ever thought about what a gift card really is?  A gift card is where someone takes the national currency (US Dollar, British Pound, Euro, etc.) and converts it into a store currency.  This severely limits the use of the currency.

And if the company issuing the gift card declares bankruptcy and shuts its doors?  The currency becomes useless.

Read The Saving Freak's article HERE

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My Desktop Picture

Tony, has placed a picture of his desktop picture on his website with the question, "Does your desktop picture say anything about you?"

So I am posting my desktop picture to see if it does say anything about me.


What do you think?  Does my desktop picture say anything about me?

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Air Conditioner

I have written before about the fact that I have a thirty-year-old house that has thirty-year-old house problems.  One of the problems is that the downstairs AC is the original AC for the house.

Problem 1 – January 2008

It was making a "banging" sound.

Diagnosis: Low on refrigerant – $75.

Problem 2 – May 2008

It was not cooling at all, and it was making a loud electrical "HUMMMMMMMM" sound.

Diagnosis: Condenser unit fan was not operating – $200+

Problem 3 – June 2008

It stopped cooling again.  It was a day before vacation so I decided to have it looked at when I got back home two weeks later.

Diagnosis:  Electrical wiring insulation had worn through and was shorting out the fan – $105

So we are back to enjoying the nice cool air conditioning in the dead-middle of a South Carolina summer.

I wonder when I will have to replace this unit?  Part of me wants to bury my head in the sand and hope that it runs another thirty years.  The realistic side of me says I should go ahead and start pricing out units.  Initial looks have shown a cost of $5K – $7K.  Just what I want to spend my money on …  an air conditioner.

Why do I bring all of this up?  Because it is so important to look ahead when preparing a financial plan.  Jenn and I could pretend that this issue does not exist and then have a financial "emergency" when this AC really does fail permanently.  In the past (when we were always broke), we would ignore this issue and then be surprised when it failed.  Now, we recognize it as a known, upcoming expense, and we plan for it.

I do hope that it lasts another thirty years, though. 

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VOTE: New Web Site Graphics!

I know that a vast majority of readers use the subscription option to receive daily posts and that means that there is a good chance you have not seen the new graphics that have been appearing on the web site.

You can check out the main web site HERE and the I Was Broke. Now I'm Not. web site HERE.

Once you have viewed the main site and the book web site, please share your thoughts by voting below.


The new graphics are
View Results


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ING: Do You Know Your Number?

If you have read this website with any regularity, you will know that I am a freak about having a plan.  I want a plan for anything related to my finances.

One thing that I teach during my events (Financial Learning Experience and Financial Freedom Experience) is the importance of calculating how much money you need to retire.  It is also taught in my book, I Was Broke. Now I’m Not.

It is SO IMPORTANT to know how much money is needed to retire well.

So while I was watching the British Open this weekend, an advertisement caught my attention.  It was for ING and focused on a website named, and it was asking the very question I ask during my events: “Do you know how much money you will need to retire well?”

So I went to the website and calculated my number.  The result?  I am ready to roll for retirement!  Of course, I already knew that fact but I am a sucker for new and different ways to determine my family’s preparedness for retirement.

So here is the CHALLENGE to everyone today.  Take five minutes and calculate Your Number at and then calculate your number using the “Retirement Nest-Egg Required Calculator”.

Are YOU going to be able to retire well?

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Related posts/links

TOOLS: Calculate Amount Needed For Retirement

TOOLS: How Much To Invest Each Month?

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