While there are many reasons to pay down debt early and to eventually pay off debt, there is a reason that most financial experts do not include in their advice.
Yes, you will feel a new level of freedom. Yes, you will be able to save more money. And, yes, you will stretch your paycheck much further. But none of these come close to the number one reason to put debt behind you.
Here is the number one reason: you will be able to give more. That’s right. Persons who are debt-free give more to help others. They do not need to consider the question of whether or not they can afford to do so, but rather are waiting to hear about needs they can respond to.
When money is tight due to excessive credit card payments, car payments or that personal loan, you will struggle to give. Your thoughts will center around what you need rather than what others need.
I recently was privileged to hear a story from a young couple in their twenties. They married and between the two of them had a combined $130,000 in college debt and a car loan. Together they developed a plan to retire this debt. As they prayed and stuck to their plan, they actually became (drum roll here) debt-free within three years! Three years may seem like a long time, but they learned so much about debt, about giving and about the discipline of paying off loans early and exactly how much money it saved them in the long run.
Perhaps you haven’t thought about the freedom you might feel if you were able to reduce your debt considerably, but I can personally guarantee that you will find certain freedom and realize the fun it is to be able to sow into the needs of others.
“In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” (Acts 20:35)