Monthly Archives: December 2014

Slaying the Debt Dragon ~ A Guest Post by Cherie Lowe

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Cherie rsz_final_cover_of_bookBeing in debt is a lot like being in the dark.

I’m not talking about bedtime dark, where you can still see a stream of light from the moon or the gentle glow of a night-light in the hallway. No, being in debt is like sitting alone in darkness so pitch-black, so completely devoid of light, that you finally squeeze your eyes tightly shut, praying when you open them there will be some glow, even if it’s just the faintest illumination.

Then there is the isolation. When you feel hopelessly in debt, lies like these creep into your head:

No one could have made this many mistakes.

No one else could feel this out of control.

No one could have been that dumb with their money.

No one else could have let a credit card balance spiral dizzily beyond reach (even though you were using it only for emergencies). No one else could have felt the pressure to keep up with others by spending money that was not her own. No one could feel this scared about not having a secure future. No one else could be under this kind of pressure.

So lonely. So in the dark.

You are not the only one struggling to escape the darkness of debt, even excessive debt. A great number of people have shared their lonely stories with me—either on my blog or in person—over the past five and a half years. A lot of them are slaying debt dragons right now or at least trying to figure out what weapons to use to begin the battle. And some have fought and won their battles already. There is actually a large community of people who make hard choices to get out of debt and spend less than they make every day.

But back to those feelings of darkness. When those “no one else could have” statements float around in your brain, you begin to believe the lie that you really are the only one who has this nasty debt problem. Then the gloom you’re stumbling around in creeps into your very soul, along with its partners in crime, shame and guilt.

That darkness will keep you from sharing your story, preventing you from getting the help you need to get out of debt. It will also hinder you from offering hope to others who are on the same path, feeling just as alone as you do. Darkness is an evil fiend—a dragon, if you will—that casts some sort of spell paralyzing us all.

In the beginning, it was difficult for my husband, Brian, and me to “go public” with our story. I mean, come on—we haven’t always been the people who have paid off $127,482.30 in debt. Back in April 2008, we were the people who had $127K+ of debt. It’s much easier to share your story when you have kicked a few debt dragons in the teeth than when you have one (or twelve) breathing fire down your back.

And that’s why I committed to continuing to tell our story, even after there was victory. Because I know what it’s like to feel alone and in the dark.

You are not alone. Cast out the darkness and tell your story. Be honest with yourself and others about your finances so you can begin the path to victory over debt. Get the help and hope that you need to begin defeating your own debt dragons.

You see, the first step to getting out of debt doesn’t involve elaborate spreadsheets. Honestly, it isn’t about cutting up your credit cards, either. It’s not even establishing an emergency fund. No, the first step is simply to lift your eyes up and believe that the dragons can be beaten.

Slaying the Debt Dragon provides the proverbial hope and the practical help your finances need this year. There is a way out. You are not alone. Pick up your sword and begin battling your foe.

Cherie Author HeadshotBio:

Since 2008, Cherie Lowe has been confidently wearing a plastic crown and encouraging others to dream big dreams.

Together with her husband, Brian, Cherie paid off $127,482.30 in a little under four years. She scribed the ups and downs of their debt-slaying journey on her popular website, www.QueenOfFree.net.

A graduate of Asbury University, Cherie strongly believes that something can come from nothing and that there is always a way for her readers to simplify their lives and their budgets. More than anything, through speaking and written word, Cherie longs for others to know that there is hope for getting their finances under control. Her family’s story has appeared in the Wall Street JournalYahoo FinanceRedbook magazineAOL Daily FinanceNBC News, and more. Cherie and Brian reside in Greenwood, Indiana, along with their daughters, Anna and Zoe.

Join the court of the Queen of Free on TwitterFacebook, or Pinterest to find practical, money-saving tips and daily inspiration to slay the debt dragon.

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Winter Bliss ~ A Poem for Christmas by Kurt W. Bubna

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Mother and son outdoors at winter

Winter bliss, a gentle kiss, a season of good cheer

A time for love, a time for us, a special time of year

The twinkling lights, the warm delights, a host of heaven hear

A cry from every desperate heart for Jesus to be near

Snowfall in winter Park

In Him our hope and comfort found

In Him our fears relieved

In Him our voices find their sound

In Him we rest and breathe

Glacier Park in winter

What is this crowned within our souls

That carries us to peace?

A knowing deep, we are complete

His own, His love, His keep.

winter games

 

Merry Christmas to you and yours!

You are loved,

Kurt

PS. Just a day or so left to get each of my three ebooks for just $2.99. Did you know you can gift digital books on Amazon? Check them out here

Mr Mrs Front PanelPIAD Front PanelEpic Grace Cover High Res

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6 Responses to Winter Bliss ~ A Poem for Christmas by Kurt W. Bubna

  1. Kurt, I hear your heart in this poem. Thank you. And I wish you and your whole family a “Christ filled Christmas.”

    With my love and prayers, Aunt Dee

  2. Beautiful Pastor Kurt, thank you for your heart! Merry Christmas and may blessings abound for you and yours now and throughout the new year.

Here’s a special Christmas gift from me to you!

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Digital tablet with christmas presents

For me . . . To write is to encourage and care for people. It’s a significant part of what I do as a pastor. For that reason, promoting my books is not self-promotion, but investing in the lives of people who matter to me and to the Father. With that in mind, I have some good news.

For a limited time, the eBook version of each of my books is on sale for just $2.99 on Amazon. That means for the price of a pizza (or two cups of coffee at Starbucks!) you could order all three books!

Here’s a brief summary of what they’re about and a link:

Epic Grace ReaderEpic Grace ~ Chronicles of a Recovering Idiot reveals my honest, heartfelt, and often hilarious missteps along the path to grace. You’ll discover what it means to experience the unconditional love of God, regardless of how often you stumble, and you’ll gain a fresh view of how to find God’s purpose for your life. Get the digital version here for just $2.99: http://amzn.to/13CFOL7

Mr Mrs Front PanelMr. & Mrs. ~ How to Thrive in a Perfectly Imperfect Marriage encourages couples to learn how to not just survive in a long-term marriage, but to thrive. In this book, you’ll see that the joys of marriage often arrive because of its many challenges, not despite them. Marriage is a perfectly imperfect relationship that’s hard, but worth it. Get the digital version here for just $2.99: http://amzn.to/1GUqB44

PIAD Front PanelPerfectly Imperfect: A Devotional for Grace-Filled Living is a collection of life-lessons learned over many years of walking with Jesus. Profound at times and always practical, this book will encourage and challenge you to develop in your relationship with God and others. This book is a great gift for friends and family. Get the digital version here for just $2.99: http://amzn.to/1DQkQZ1

Thank you for your love and support, and may you and yours have a very merry and Jesus-filled Christmas!

You are loved,

Sig

 

 

 

PS. Click here to go to an Amazon link that will take you to all three books at once.

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Bubna Christmas Letter 2014!

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Felicitación navideñaDear friends and family,

There are two kinds of people in the world:

  • those who hate annual Christmas letters!

  • those who love ‘em!

Alas, I fall in the “love ‘em” group.

I know . . . We all live crazy busy lives. We all have the best intentions to write Grandma or our old (and getting older) dear friends. But at Christmas we get inspired and make the time to connect again.

Maybe it’s something about the Christmas spirit or fond memories of Christmas past. Maybe it’s determination to not let a new year begin without some contact with old friends. Whatever it is, and even if it’s just once a year, I love reconnecting if only for a moment.

So here’s the skinny on the Bubna clan . . . .

Laura & MeLaura and I celebrated our 40th engagement anniversary on Thanksgiving, and we’re looking forward to our 40th wedding celebration on July 12, 2015. Any woman who can survive FORTY years with me is a saint. We love each other more today than ever.

Nate & Jess 2Jessica and Nathan are still actively serving and working with me at Eastpoint Church; Jess in administration, Nate as the Family Pastor. Caleb is four and phenomenal! His smile and joy are a gift to all. They also have a baby girl in their world named Abigail who will turn one in January, and it looks like they’ll be able to adopt her sometime in early 2015!

Nate FamilyNathan and Brooke are still in Portland. They’ve recently sold their home and are looking for a new and larger home to house their family of three kids, five chickens, two cats, and a partridge in a pear tree. Adelle is eight and great. Elijah is four and fabulous. Henry Moses is three, and he pretty much gets whatever he wants from Grandpa.

Kyle & Michelle 3Michelle and Kyle are here in Spokane and both lead very full lives. Kyle is working in accounting for an outpatient surgery center, and Michelle is just one year away from becoming an RN. I’m proud of how hard both of them work. No kids (yet), but they have two cats who think they are kids and get treated as such.

Ike & Tiff 2Isaac and Tiffany moved back to Seattle this past summer. Ike is the program director for Street Bean (a coffee business that helps street-involved youth reclaim their lives), and he’s also working on his masters in leadership. Tiffany is busy as ever making people beautiful in the salon she works in full time.

For me, this past year has been filled with new challenges and lots of opportunities to grow (translated: it’s been hard at times, but good). I wrote two more books (Mr. & Mrs. ~ How to Thrive in a Perfectly Imperfect Marriage, and Perfectly Imperfect: A Devotional for Grace-Filled Living). Both books are doing well, they have received extremely favorable reviews and they make great Christmas gifts (hint, hint).

People ask, “How do you find time to write?” I always say, “Sleepless in Spokane! And writing is therapeutic for me, so it doesn’t complicate my life; it seriously benefits it.” Hopefully, my books benefit others as well.

Mr Mrs Front PanelPIAD Front Panel

This January we celebrate our 12th anniversary at Eastpoint. Every day I thank God for our church and all He has done and is doing through us. It’s humbling to be called “pastor” by such an amazing community of faith.

EP Pan

In summary, we’re older, wiser, better, and full of joy and hope because we have a Savior, who is and always will be, Emmanuel.

May you and yours have the best Christmas ever!

You are loved,

Sig

Christmas Letter Banner

PS ~ A Christmas Poem for Friends

Friends Like You by Kurt W. Bubna

 

There are some who come

And some who go

There are some you never really know

 

There are friends in the fray

And there are friends who stay

But friends like you are rare today

 

You share our cries

You share our hearts

Your share our joy

Our very lives

 

And it’s friends like you

That make life a treasure

Full of fun, surprise, and tons of pleasure!

Elijah 3LauraLaura me River BWIMG_5211

 

Caleb & AbigailAdele 4

Kurt & Henry

Kurt & Adelle 4

Laura and ElijahHenry MosesCalebAbigail

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24 Responses to Bubna Christmas Letter 2014!

  1. Great newsletter. (I’m in the camp that “loves ’em”.) Merry Christmas, Bubna family! I know you’re hoping for snow, Kurt! Linda

  2. Enjoyed your annual Christmas letter. Love to you and your beautiful family!
    Merry Christmas!

  3. Great to hear things are going great at Eastpoint. Loved your letter! Even though we are no longer at Eastpoint it is great to know you are all doing well!
    You are loved and thought of often
    Doris

  4. I tend to fall in the don’t like only because most letters are long and sorry to say kind of boring…yours was short sweet and too the point. I liked your poem also I may have to send it to some friends. We love you and are so blessed to have been part of Eastpoint for so long and to have you as our pastor and friend.

  5. Always look forward to the Bubna holiday letter. I’m one of the “love ’em” crowd. Happy holidays to you and Laura and ALL of the Bubnas.

    Lois

  6. We LOVE the annual Bubna Christmas letter! It’s a joy to hear details about all of your lives, because we love you all so dearly. Our hearts are forever connected in Jesus. Merry Christmas to you all from the Vickers Fam.

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