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Making Healthy Financial Choices for Life (Part 2 of 2)

Air Date 08/11/2017

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Chris Hogan, author of the national best-selling book Retire Inspired, offers practical advice for taking control of your finances by making wise short- and long-term plans with your money. Topics include establishing a budget, eliminating debt, planning for retirement, and more. (Part 2 of 2) 

Episode Transcript

Opening:

Teaser: 

Chris Hogan: For the young people out there, I want you to hear me: The sooner you get started, the more you can do of...more of what the Lord’s called you to do. And if you’re not as young, and you’re feelin’ the crunch, you’re not done yet. You still have an opportunity. And so let’s not waste another day. Let’s not waste another hour or minute, but start to get intentional and plug in to this and start to work this process. 

End of Teaser

John Fuller: That’s Chris Hogan and he’s here again today on “Focus on the Family” and he’s gonna help you create a better financial future. Your host is Focus president and author, Jim Daly and I’m John Fuller.

Jim Daly: John, last time we started a great conversation about the need to budget and get out of debt, save money, give generously and invest in your retirement. And today we want to continue that discussion - really get into some of the nitty-gritty practical’s of what to do in each age demographic. If you’re in your 20’s, what do you do? Your 30’s, all the way down to your 60’s and 70’s. And our guest has some great and inspirational insights for you in his book,Retire Inspired. It’s Chris Hogan, who works with the Ramsey Group, Dave Ramsey.

Body: 

Jim: Chris, welcome back to “Focus.”

Chris: Well, thank you, guys. Thank you so much for having me. It’s a pleasure to be here.

Jim: Man, it was on fire last time. You were covering—

Chris: It was fun.

Jim: --so much stuff.

Chris: Yes, you guys are fantastic conversationalists.

Jim: You know, I want to repeat a little bit from last time and just to set the table for this time.

Chris: Right.

Jim: What do you do to start? Let’s say you’re just in a bit of mayhem. You just got married. You spent a little too much on the credit cards. The first bill has come and you’re lookin’ at each other goin’, “Wow! We need to do somethin’. What do we do?”

Chris: Well, I would say there are four steps I’d love for people to do out there, regardless of where they are. No. 1 is, acknowledge that better is available, right? Understand what it is you’re trying to accomplish. So, have a dream meeting. Start to talk about the things you want to accomplish.

Next I want you to make a list of your debts. Who do you owe, right? Let’s look at it on paper. And then I want you to sit down and learn to budget. I want you to tell money where to go instead of wondering where it went. So, you cut back in some areas, right? You gotta begin to put some boundaries for yourself.

And then the final thing is, you start to save. Put a cushion between yourself and life happening. And once you do those things, then you can start to move toward investing.

But I want people to be focused first. Debt is a thief, so we’ve gotta look at that, be open and honest and work together as a team.

Jim: And I want to remind people, if you missed the program last time, you can get the download or get the app for your Smartphone.

John: As well as the book and we’ll link over to Chris’s website and a lot of great tools there, as well. That’swww.focusonthefamily.com/radio.

Jim: Chris, one of the common things I know for many people, we’re thinking Social Security will do it. We’ve been payin’ in for years and years and that’s gonna be my gravy train. What do you say to that?

Chris: I’d say, not so fast.

Jim: (Laughing) Yeah, not so much gravy.

Chris: It is one of those where I started researching it and it surprised me. We all know Social Security is based on how much we pay into it. But I did some research, guys. And did you know the average Social Security payout is 16,000 a year, on average?

Jim: Total.

Chris: Total.

Jim: Yeah.

Chris: That equates to $1,333 dollars a month. Now let’s pause here for a second. The average mortgage payment is $1,200. The average used car payment’s $470 a month. The average new car payment is approaching $625 a month. So, Social Security alone won’t pay for our mortgage and a car payment.

So, it’s one of those things where you look at it and you go, wait a minute. I can’t live a dream on Social Security. I may only be able to take care of the bare minimum. So, while Social Security, we never know if it’s gonna be there or not. I hope it is. But I want people to be prepared. I don’t want them to be caught off guard. If legislation happens or changes happen and you’ve got your hopes hooked to that wagon, that’s an unstable wagon.

Jim: Chris, I’ve gotta ask you in a spiritual context. Some people say, “Don’t worry about what tomorrow’s going to be.” And it’s a fair context. The Lord encourages us to rely upon Him and not to plan necessarily that much. I mean, there are Scriptures you can attach to that.

Chris: Um-hmmm...

Jim: Speak to the person who wants to live day by day, he doesn’t want to be too concerned for tomorrow. Is that right? Or would you correct their theology a little?

Chris: Well, what I would say is this; I think it’s a matter of worrying about tomorrow. I know firmly that my life is in the hands of my Lord and Savior and I trust Him completely.

Jim: Yeah.

Chris: But what I do want to do is to be a good steward of what He’s blessed me with. And that’s my time, my talent and my resources. So, I would say to people that have that mind-set, if you’ve been blessed to have a job that’s paying you $20,000 a year, your job is to be a good steward of that money.

And so, we don’t just go work and not do anything. We have to take care of things. And so, it says in the Bible, we have to take care of our own household, right?

Jim: Yeah.

Chris: But we’re also called to be a blessing to others. So, I don’t think you can take care of your household and be a blessing to others without managing what He’s blessed you with.

Jim: And He talks a lot about managing things well. That reminds me of Jean. I remember when we first moved to Colorado and you’d be on a dirt road and I wouldn’t have a seat belt on. I know. Everybody just went, “What?!” And Jean, I would say, “You know, I’m trustin’ the Lord. If He wants to take me today, He’ll take me.” And she she’d say, “Well, that may be true, but He did give you a brain. (Laughter) And you could put your—

Chris: I like that.

Jim: --you could put your seat belt on—

Chris: That’s right.

Jim: --and save your life.”

Chris: Yeah, well, and I’d say the same could be talking about planning for your dreams. Remember, I want everyone out there working a plan, because I want you to do what He’s called you to do. I don’t want you working a job you don’t care about or things you don’t care about. I want you to do what gets your heart excited and where the Lord’s guidin’ you.

Jim: So, let’s start in our 20’s.

Chris: Yes.

Jim: So, what about the couple, they’re in their 20’s. What do they have to do?

Chris: Well, I’ve got a few tips for ‘em. If you’re in your 20’s or 30’s, I want you to learn to budget. Sit down and flex that muscle and learn how to tell money where to go. Next I want you to eliminate debt and get it out of your life and learn to save. You’re No. 1 wealth-building tool is your income. And so, if you can start pluggin’ into a 401(k) or a 403(b) early on in your 20’s, you will set yourself up to have many more options in your 50’s.

Jim: What kind of percentages are you looking at?

Chris: I encourage people to start with 15 percent saving for retirement, okay? And this number, how do I arrive there? [Be]cause it’s based on the compound interest and time. If you do that, and you can do that, and here’s why. Did you all know most people are spending 24 percent of their income on consumer debt—credit cards—

Jim: Yeah.

Chris: --consumer debt, 24 percent, almost a quarter of our income. So, if we can get out of debt, well, it’s easy for us to be able to put 15 percent back.

Jim: Sure, that’s be 15--

Chris: The easy math.

Jim: --of that 20 … you know,--

Chris: There you go.

Jim: --that 24.

Chris: Yes, sir.

Jim: Often at that age, you’re tryin’ to decide, you know, you may be lookin’ at a house, some big purchase items. You’ve got [a] washer and dryer you’re thinkin’ about buying or you know, some people rent those items now. What are some of those decisions and what’s the criteria for making them?

Chris: Thank you. That’s a perfect question. To people in their 20’s, slow down. Slow down. People in their 20’s want what their parents have - like now.

Jim: So, slow your appetite down.

Chris: Slow everything down.

Jim: Yeah.

Chris: You know, your parents have taken 30, 40 years to build to that level. Stop tryin’ to get everything overnight. And so, sit down. Be realistic. It is not a bad thing to rent. Renting allows you to save time so you can buy a home the right way. I’ve seen so many stories of people that ran out and bought a home that they ultimately couldn’t afford and it ended up being a curse, not a blessing.

Jim: Hmmm...

Chris: And so, slow yourself down. Have the right heart about it. Pray about these decisions, you know. Be clear on it and I tell people, the bigger the decision, the more time you need to take making it.

Jim: You mentioned compound interest. Some people may not understand what that is and thepowerof it. Give us an illustration. I think you used $1,000 in your book.

Chris: Yeah.

Jim: Show us the 40-year impact. Since we’re talking about 20-somethings and what it means—

Chris: Yeah.

Jim: --to save a little today and the impact of compounding interest.

Chris: Well, actually there’s a, you know, $100 example. If you can save $100 a month from age 25 to 65, you can become a millionaire. And that happens because of compound interest, which simply means, guys, not only the money that you put in is gaining interest, but that interest is gaining interest.

And so, imagine this thing constantly building time after time. But what we have to do is save first. We’ve gotta have that vision to be able to see it and slow down and realize, I want to make sure that I have somethin’ for later for the people that I really love.

Jim: Right. So, I mean, if you’re squeezin’ a $100 a month to do that, that’s 1,200 a year and you do that over 40 years—

Chris:You—

Jim: --it’s a big number.

Chris: --it is a massive number. I would say you’ll be close to 1.5 million. So, just imagine doing 15 percent of your income into a 401(k). Right? Being able to put that there. It’s automatic that your job will handle that. That will put you in a position to be in a great place. The key is, don’t touch that money. People are pullin’ money out of their 401(k)—

Jim: Right.

Chris: --because they don’t have an emergency fund.

Jim: Now looking at the 20’s still, you had an example in the book about your wife and you deciding about furniture.

Chris: Oh, my. (Laughter)

John: You pulled out of your retirement account.

Chris: Oh, my, I did; I did. And that’s why I’m warning people—

John: Yeah.

Chris: --because it was one of those things where, in looking at it, instead of us thinking about how to save toward it, we just wanted to get it done.

John: Yeah.

Chris: And so, you know, I look at that now. That furniture - it’ll probably cost me close to 350,000 in the long haul.

Jim: Wow.

Chris: And so, it’s just the power of that.

John: Now, not literally 350,000 but if you had kept it there …

Chris: If I’d kept it there, allowing with the compound interest, that’s where it would be as of today. Yeah, so lesson learned. And so, I don’t want other people to feel that pain. I want them to see it and learn from my mistakes. Be clear on what it is you’re doin’ and make sure as a couple, you gain agreement. This is not a home down payment. This is not a furniture fund. This is something to allow us to pursue our dreams.

Jim: Right.

Chris: That’s the deal.

John: And Chris, before we leave the 20’s, I’ve got some children in their 20’s and thinking about retirement is really hard if they haven’t quite figured out what they’re gonna do for the next couple of years.

Chris: Yes.

John: How do they get over “what’s next” and start thinking of “what’s way down the road?”

Chris: I think the greatest opportunity they have are you and your wife. Just you sitting down, talking with them about for yourself. Maybe you started early, all right. Or maybe you didn’t. But havin’ that conversation about where you are now versus where you could be if you would’ve started or gotten a little bit more focused, I think is the most powerful thing parents can do.

John: Okay.

Chris: Teach them the habit of spend, save and give. Right? Those three things. If they can learn that lesson and they move into their 20’s or taken on that first job with that spirit, they know the value.

Jim: Ah, yeah, last time we mentioned this, but I want to repeat it, John, and we’ll link to your website so people can take it. But it’s yourRetire Inspiredquotient.

Chris: Yes, sir.

Jim: And it’s a little quiz you can do. What does it tell you?

Chris: Yeah, the R:IQ’s designed to help people to know how much they’re gonna need to live their dream. And it’s set up for you to share it with family and friends. It’s not sharing your own personal information. It’s for you, but I want people to know that retirement’s not about an age. It’s a financial number. And you’re chasin’ down dreams. You’re doin’ the things that God’s called you to do. We have to have a plan.

Jim: Chris, that sounds really good and I hope people will come to the website and we’ll link to it and they can take their R:IQ test to see where they’re at in their retirement. When did you start, John?

John: I was about 28 when—

Jim: That’s when I was--

John: --my employer said—

Jim: --I was about 28.

John: --”We’re gonna set this up for you.” It was a little ministry and they were very gracious and I’m really glad I didn’t wait any longer.

Jim: Well, okay, we went through the 20’s. Let’s move to the 30’s. Let’s say John and I didn’t start in our 20’s—

Chris: Yes.

Jim: --and we waited a couple more years.

Chris: Right. Well, I would say, you hit your 30’s. This is typically where you’re getting married, right? Maybe even havin’ kids and you want to be careful here of not allowing lifestyle to take over. You’re aware of what friends and family are doin’. And you start to be comparing yourself to where they are.

And I would say be careful here. This is where your income is really gonna start to grow, but it also allows you to truly begin to make real progress. So, be connected on here. So, again, the budgeting is still gonna come into play. Not only getting out of debt, but now avoiding debt. Be careful of those choices that you make. Don’t start to think that you need another car. Your car’s running. You’re fine.But make sure you’re aware and for the sake of your kids, start putting aside money to save for college. You know, start to be intentional and set up a game plan for your legacy.

John: So talk to the couple that’s saying, “Yeah, but our car is always breakin’ down and those folks just down the road, they have the same number of kids and a brand-new car and I’m thinkin’, yeah, that’s car payment’s probably worthwhile.”

Chris: I would say that as you look at it and you start to understand, there is an opportunity cost that comes with debt. For example, if you’re spendin’ $500 a month on a car, that’s a depreciating asset.

John: And that’s not uncommon, is it?

Chris: And it is not uncommon. The value’s droppin’ on this car each and every month. And so, you start to look at that. That’s $500 you’re not using towards your kids or towards your dream. And so, you look at that. That $500 could literally equate to close to $320,000 down the road.

And so, I just want people to be aware. It’s okay to appreciate what someone else has. Just don’t let that appreciation turn to desperation for you about where you are. I promise you, you don’t know that couple’s financial situation. I’ve coached over 20,000 people in my career and what looks fine on the outside is not fine on the inside. And so, be aware of that. Make some wise decisions. If your car’s breaking down, let’s save up so we have cash to fix it.

But then take on a second job. Bring in some extra income to save up to buy another car. Just don’t strap a payment to yourself. Don’t do that. It limits you down the road.

Jim: Good advice. Okay, that’s in the 30’s. Anything other than the looking at the Jones’s?

Chris: I would tell them to make sure you’ve got life insurance in place. You want to have term life insurance on yourself and your spouse. If you’re both working outside of the home, I would say 10 to 12 times your annual income. So, if you’re makin’ 50,000 a year, that’d be 500 to 600,000 in term insurance. If you have a spouse that’s working inside the home, you still need at least 250,000 in terms life insurance on them.

John: And why is that, Chris?

Chris: Just because if something were to happen to a spouse that’s working inside the home, the one that’s working outside of the home is gonna have to change how they’re working. That kind of tragedy in the family can rock the family unit. What I don’t want people to do is add financial insult to emotional injury. And so, by having life insurance, what you do is, you’re saying, “I love you” to my family and you’re making sure that you’re allowing them to have some money to take care of necessities.

Jim: Now what about in your 40’s? I mean, you’ve gone through some of the child-bearing times and … and now you probably have teenagers or maybe even nearing adult children. What should you be lookin’ at in your 40’s, if you haven’t started.

Chris: That’s right, well, if you haven’t started, I would say we’re always gonna start at the budgeting, attack debt and saving.

Jim: Well, can I just add, I love that about your book, because it’s “start now.”

Chris: Yeah.

Jim: It’s never recrimination about why you didn’t.

Chris: Well, thank you for mentioning that--

Jim: It’s start now.

Chris: --because a lot of people will tend to feel guilty or just be down on themselves that they haven’t started sooner. Listen, regardless, the past is in the past, right? It’s like the movieFrozen. We gotta let some stuff go.

Jim: Right.

Chris: And so, acknowledge where you are right now as your start point. And so, we’re gonna go forward. And so, I would say in your 40’s, your income is starting to go up. Your kids are growing. You’re aware of things. So, I would say kick your investing into high gear. Make sure you’re doin’ that 401(k), but also utilize Roth IRAs or mutual funds outside of retirement from investing. And start to really be aware. Start to put some of those estate planning pieces in place.

You know, you should be out of debt at this point. If you’re not, make your list and we’re gonna attack it.

Jim: Right.

Chris: Look for ways to bringin extra income, right? You can sacrifice some sleep to bring in some money to allow you to make progress.

Jim: Oh, those are all good.

John: When you mentioned getting out of debt, does that include the mortgage, as well?

Chris: Well, I would say, I want people listening to list debt smallest to biggest and first let’s start with consumer debt. So, the credit cards, the student loans, car loans. Once they do that, then we can start to move down and looking at attackin’ the house.And for the people out there that may be behind at savin’ for retirement, I want you to understand, imagine paying off your mortgage. Imagine not having that mortgage payment.

Jim: Yeah.

Chris: And so, now that 12 to 1,500 a month or more out here in this area, could now go towards your dream instead of going to the bank. See, all this leads you to gaining progress. And it’ll allow you to move a lot faster if you don’t have that mortgage payment hangin’ around your neck.

Jim: Chris, what are some of those secrets with a mortgage payment that you can accelerate spending it down? Because there are tools you can use. You can go to a 15-year—

Chris: Yes.

Jim: --rather than a 30-year. Jean and I did that. It’s phenomenal—

Chris: It is massive.

Jim: --the saving.

Chris: And when you look at it on the math side of things, I encourage people, if you have a home, get into a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage or less. When you start to think about it, the difference in payment from a 30-year to a 15-year is often four to $500. But we’re talkin’ about a difference of 15 years here!

Jim: Right.

Chris: It’s a massive difference.

Jim: And principal and interest. Totally different.

Chris: A massive shift, yes. And so, if you’re lookin’ out there to buying a home, No. 1, make sure you do a 15-year. Get the good faith estimate. Look at the fees and understand what you’re dealin’ with. But if you have a 30-year, let’s say you just signed up for it and you have it, I want you to get a quote on refinancing to a 15-year. If you’ve been in your home for a few years, you can do that relatively cheap and it’ll make a massive difference in your financial future.

Jim: That’s good. The importance of Roth IRAs. You’ve mentioned it last time and this time. Explain why it’s a good tool.

Chris: Yes, whenever you’re dealing with a 401(k) or a 403(b), that’s pre-tax money. So, that means you’ll pay taxes when you draw it out at 59 ½. But with a Roth IRA, because it’s after tax dollars, it means that all the growth is tax free. The government can’t touch it, guys, all right, ‘cause you’ve already paid taxes on this money.

And so, utilizing that up to 5,500 a year if you’re below age 50 and if you’re over 50, you can do a catch-up provision of 6,500, another thousand. So, it gives you a great opportunity, with Roth, to grow money tax free.

Jim: .Chris, let’s move to the 50’s. I mean, many people will feel panicked at that point. They see their horizon for working maybe the next 20 years. They haven’t done enough or maybe have not started. And again, I love your statement: get started today.

Chris: Yeah.

Jim: Don’t let guilt paralyze you—

Chris: That’s right.

Jim: --so you’re not going someplace. Start today.

Chris: That’s right.

Jim: So, in your 50’s, what are you gonna do?

Chris: Well, I would say, we have to be aware of a very realistic thing, whether you’re in your late 40’s, mid-40’s to 50’s and that’s mid-life crisis. This is where you start to get that “deserve” mentality. You’ve seen some stuff, the boat, the motorcycle, right? And you start to feel like, I’ve worked really, really hard. I deserve some stuff.

I’d say be careful there. There’s nothin’ wrong with you havin’ some stuff. I just want you to pay cash for it, right. I don’t want you to have guilt or the shame of buying that. So, be very aware.

But be careful because we’ve gotta be adult enough to know the difference between a want and a need. And so, have you ever, let’s be honest, guys, have you ever wanted somethin’ so bad that you felt like you needed it?

Jim: Yeah!

Chris: Yes. (Laughter) We’ve all been there.

John: You mean, like in the past day or two?

Chris: In the past hour? (Laughter) You know, we’ve all been there. But what we have to do is have that awareness to go, okay. This is where I am, but this is what I need to do. And so, I call those decisions, especially if you do ‘em with debt, those are detours. That’s movin’ you further away from your dream from what you said you wanted to do.

Now if you’re 50, you’re not done yet, right? People are livin’ to 85 and 90. You got time, but you have to make sure you’re working a plan that’s actually gonna work. So, be clear on debt. Be careful of lifestyle choices. Make sure that you’re utilizing all the catch-up provisions and with investing.

Over age 50, you have some extra opportunities to put extra money away. So, be aware of those. Get connected with an investment professional.But start to have conversations. Start to be aware of the things you don’t know, but the things you need to know.

Jim: Chris, in the 50’s particularly, you can be hit with something you didn’t anticipate and that is the care for your aging parents. If this comes out of left field and you haven’t prepared for it and maybe your parents haven’t prepared for it, what do you do?

Chris: Wow, this is a tough spot, guys and I’ve seen a lot of this. I call it “the sandwich generation,” because you’ve got kids you’re tryin’ to launch, that some boomerang back home.

Jim: Right.

Chris: And then you have parents that are aging. And my heart goes out to people in this situation, ‘cause it’s a tough spot. You are trying to honor your parents, which we’re called to do in the Bible. And so, it’s a matter of really understanding what you can do versus what you can’t do.

I would say, if you’ve got siblings out there that you all need to have a family meeting. We need to have an understanding of, hey, what are we gonna do for mom and dad? If you happen to be just an only child, it’s a matter of being very clear. I would say reach out to a financial coach. Let’s understand the benefits and options that may be available to your parents that they’re not utilizing.

Are they getting their Social Security or their VA benefits if they served in the military? And so, start to reach out and understand where you are, but just be realistic about what you can do and be very clear on what you can and can’t do.

Jim: No, that’s good.

John: And how do we connect with our parents about their own financial circumstances?

Chris: Okay, you’ve come up with a big topic here. You gotta remember something. Regardless of your age, in the eyes of your parents, you will always be their child.

Jim: (Chuckling) That’s right.

Chris: And it’s one of those things where I think it’s the spirit in which we approach it. If you approach talkin’ to mom and dad and you have this mind-set of what am I gonna get, your parents are gonna smell that on ya, right? And they’re gonna shut that down. I call that the spirit of greed.

But if you approach it where you’re giving them information, telling them about my book or a podcast or other things out there, now you’re approach it from wanting to help. And I think the spirit of it changes.

Now I do want to encourage your listeners to do this. You’re not gonna approach this subject once with your parents and they open up and tell you everything. This is what I call essentially knockin’ at the door. You want to knock and let them know you’re available. You want to knock and point them in the direction of information, but you’re doin’ it because you love them. And so, I’d say gradual. It’s not guaranteed they’re gonna open it up and tell you it all, but for you in your heart to know that you tried and you were there, I think is the main thing.

Jim: Chris, this has been terrific. We still have people in their 60’s—

Chris: Yes.

Jim: --who may not have planned ahead. They are feeling panic. What do they do?

Chris: I think first thing is, we gotta acknowledge you still have time. You still have an opportunity.

Jim: You may have to work longer.

Chris: You’re gonna have to work longer and your dream may look a little bit different, right, but that’s okay. What we want to do is be very clear on what we can do. So, I would say, look at makin’ lifestyle changes.

Do you own a home? And we gotta look at selling it. Do you need to take on an extra job? Do we need to start changing, downsizing home or getting out of debt with a part-time job or even a second or third job? But I think action is crucial here. We’ve gotta understand where we are and what are we gonna do?

Jim: What kind of plan does it look like though? You’re trying to save amount of dollars per year?

Chris: I think it’s a matter of really like trimmin’ back. Like I had a lady that was 64. She’d been paying on her home, but she didn’t have anything for retirement. And so, I said, “You’ve been paying on your home how long? She goes, “Well, I paid it off 10 years ago.”

And I go, okay. She goes, “But I don’t have anything for retirement.” And I was like, “Ma’am, how much is your home worth?” She goes, “It’s around 400,000.” And I go, “Have you ever considered maybe selling your home and using the equity from the sale of your home as your retirement fund?” And she literally looked at me like I’d just been in a fire. She had never thought of her home as an asset for her for retirement.

Jim: Right.

Chris: And so, what I would say is, it takes us connecting with people that have more information so we can talk about it out loud. But you’ve gotta see where you are. I’ve got another gentleman whose wife passed away. He was a widower and he brought in a roommate to live with him to help cut back on living expenses.

Jim: Right.

Chris: And so, he’s got a buddy. They play chess. They golf. They have a lot of fun. And so, little changes like that can lead to big gains.

Jim: And those are great ideas.

Chris: Yes.

Jim: Chris, I think when you get right down to it, one of the critical things is starting early. But if you haven’t, start today.

Chris: That’s right.

Jim: And trust the Lord obviously, but apply His principles. Don’t overlook His principles. Don’t be soft on those things where He’s encouraging us to think ahead, to plan ahead. We can sometimes be so spiritually minded that we’re not doing what He wants us to do. I want you to punch that again at the end of the program here.

Chris: Yes.

Jim: How to wrap this all in a bow to say, okay, no matter where you’re at, here’s what God expects of you.

Chris: Absolutely. I think one of the biggest things we need to understand is that we serve an Almighty God.

Jim: Amen.

Chris: All things are possible. And regardless of where you are, you’ve gained some experiences throughout the years. But I want you to understand, you’re not done yet. And so, for the young people out there, I want you to hear me. The sooner you get started, the more you can do of more of that the Lord’s called you to do. And if you’re not as young and you’re feelin’ the crunch, you’re not done yet. You still have an opportunity.

And so, let’s not waste another day. Let’s not waste another hour or minute, but start to get intentional and plug into this and start to work this process.

Jim: And that is so good. Chris, man, Retire Inspired, an incredible book. I think (Laughing) everybody that wants to have retirement, to be free in retirement to do more of God’s will, need this resource.

Chris: Well, I appreciate you.

Jim: This is outstanding.

Chris: Well, thank you.

Jim: And if you haven’t, don’t panic. We’ll put this book in your hands. Just call us and if you can make a gift of any amount, we’ll say thank you by doing just that, by giving you the book. If you can’t afford it, call us; we’ll still put a book in your hand and I know there are people listening that will help support the ministry to cover the cost of that. So, if you can also support Focus to help families that are struggling, we would appreciate it.

John: Yeah and I’ve read the book. It’s great. I’ve taken that R:IQ so I appreciate that, Chris. And I’ve got the pdf and I look at it, it just reminds me this is what I’ve got to do. Just keep movin’, John.

And we’re gonna link over to that, as well. And you can get a CD or a download of this program. I’ll suggest you get it and share it with your spouse. And your kids, if they’re in their teens or 20’s. They’re going to appreciate that. All these resources and you can also find information about Mvelopes, which is an easy to use money tracking system, atfocusonthefamily.com/radioor call 1-800, the letterAand the word FAMILY.

Jim: Hey, Chris, we don’t want to leave people in despair, so they haven’t applied, yet, what we’ve talked about the last couple of days. What word of hope do you have for them?

Chris: I would just say that you have many possibilities. You know, you have an opportunity today to truly make some decisions and just start. That’s what I want people to do, just have the spirit of being willing to try. And just understand you’re not done. You serve a Lord that loves you, that wants the best for you. Now what we have to do is apply the effort and the want to.

Jim: Whether you’re 25 or 65.

Chris: No matter your age. If you’re younger, you’ve got an opportunity to get started sooner. If you’re a little bit older, you have an opportunity to finish strong, to be an example to other people that are in your circle and people that love you.

John: And that is a legacy that you’ll leave.

Chris: Yes, it is.

Closing:

John: Well I’m John Fuller, and on behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team, thanks for listening to Focus on the Family. Have a great weekend and join us again Monday as we once again help you and your family thrive in Christ.

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Guest

Chris Hogan

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Chris Hogan is the national best-selling author of Retire Inspired: It’s Not an Age, It’s a Financial Number, and host of the "Retire Inspired" podcast. A popular and dynamic speaker on the topics of personal finance, retirement and leadership, Chris helps people across the country develop successful strategies to manage their money in both their personal lives and businesses. For more than a decade, he has served at Ramsey Solutions as a trusted financial coach. You can follow Chris on Twitter and Facebook, and learn more about him by visiting his website.