Faith in God

I’ve hesitated to write this blog because I’m not a preacher and I’ve not been to seminary. Yet, I feel like something has to be said.

Recently I read this on Facebook. “God is up to something big just for you. He is preparing to bless you. No matter what, stay focused and stay the course. You’re going to be blessed because of your persistence and faith.”

Another from a wealthy pastor. “Understand that if God planted you somewhere, he’s established you in the proper soil to facilitate prosperity,” T.D. Jakes.

Others have used verses of scripture out of context or left words out of a verse. Why? You’d have to ask them. Let me give you an example. The Newsboys have a song that says, “You make all things work together for my good.” Sounds great but they are playing off of Romans 8:28 that actually says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” You decide if those say the same thing?

Another is Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” In this passage God was talking to Jeremiah at a specific time and place.

Rather, Jesus  said this, “I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of this world, even as I am not of it.” John 17:14-16

Later in the same chapter Jesus prayed, “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.” John 17:24

God is eternal. This world is not. The things we have here will rust and deteriorate. Understanding God is something that we are not capable of. His power and wisdom, we cannot fathom.

There will be people that are going through things that will not make it. Believers that live in unbelievable poverty. Followers of Jesus that will be killed simply for believing. Disasters that are impossible to understand.

Taking scripture out of context and making promises such as prosperity in this world that may or may not happen cheapens the gospel. Faith in God is so much bigger!

It comforts a mother who has lost a child or a wife who has lost a husband. Faith gives hope for eternity in illness because this isn’t our home. Knowing that Jesus prayed, “I want those you have given me to be with me where I am.”

Have faith that gives hope in love. The ultimate love that gives us eternal life with Him.

 

Retiring – How Much Income Can I Take?

How much income can I take when I retire?  Answering this question wrong can be disastrous.

The answer to this question depends on whether you want to be an employee or a business owner. Let me explain what I mean.

An employee has a set salary. A business owner does not. How much income the business owner takes is dependent on the profitability of the company. The employee’s salary is paid regardless.

There are countless studies that have been done to figure out what is a sustainable income a person can take from their retirement accounts. When I started in 1999, retirees were told they could take 6% or higher. Then the dotcom bubble burst followed by the Great Recession of 2008. When I left the business, some had dropped the percentage down to 3%.

Over my 18 years the percentage continuously changed. Those that started taking 6% in 2000 were quickly met with the possibility of running out of money before they die. It happened again in 2008. When will be the next time?

So, what is the correct percentage that you should take? Is there a correct answer to this question? The answer in short to the second question is no. Then, what should you do?

Business Owner, Employee, or Combination

Business Owner:

As a business owner, your income is based on profitability. This retiree will base his/her income off of returns. In a year that their account returns 10%, they will take more income than they will in a year in which the accounts return is zero or negative. Good returns equals higher income. Bad returns equals lower income.

Another option for the retiree/business owner is to own assets that produce income such as bonds or real estate. The owner of a rental property still receives income despite the value of the rental property. The bond still pays income despite the value of the bond.

Both options come with risks such as market risk, interest rate risk, and default risk to name a few.

Employee:

As an employee, your income is set as a salary. What you are doing here is similar to a pension and is usually done with an annuity. Just as with a pension, there are decisions to be made. Do you need income for one life or two. If all the money isn’t used, would you like it to be left to a beneficiary? Each decision made will impact the amount of the income.

The dollar amount paid is set, and running out of income isn’t a risk. The risk comes with inflation because the income typically does not change.

Combination – Business Owner/Employee:

If possible, many retirees will choose a combination. First, they will solve for the amount necessary to pay the bills or slightly higher. The remainder will be run like a business. This option provides inflation protection while covering the necessities of life.

Which retiree will you be? Do you know? Don’t wait until you’re about to retire to find out how much income you can take.

Mickey Ellison

mickey@aegis.insurance or mickey@mickeyellison.com

Office: 316-243-2131 or Mobile: 316-209-9005

 

 

 

Things to Think About

Life can become so cluttered that we find ourselves directionless.  Unless we’re willing to stop, we will wind up somewhere, but where? Here I will share with you some guidelines to help regain control.

  1. First, take a moment to think about who and what is most important to you. The decisions you make or don’t make will have consequences.
  2. Do you take time each day to address your health and physical fitness?
  3. Financially, do you know your income and outflow? If your outflow is greater than your income, we must address that first.
  4. Have you protected those you love? What happens to your family if your are no longer here? What happens to your family if you can’t work? Can you protect them for pennies on the dollar? Do you have children. If so, who will be their guardian if something happens to you and your spouse?
  5. Do you have any emergency assets should you lose your job? How long could you survive as a family?
  6. Non-Retirement Assets: Once we’ve navigated the above areas, this is we build freedom. Think about creating other sources of income and assets or real value.
  7. Retirement Assets: Much of our focus today seems to be here. While it is important for some, it is also the most restrictive. It is also the area where many people fly blind. What do you have? What risks are you taking? How much are you paying? Is there better alternatives.

The earlier you start on these, the better. When should you start? NOW!

Mickey Ellison

(316)209-9005

mickey@mickeyellison.com

mickey@aegisgroupprotects.com

What Qualifies Me?

What qualifies me to be a life coach? Is it the fact that at one time I had the initials CFP after my name on business card? Is it because I was a NCAA D1 athlete? Did having licenses to sell financial securities? Or, that I have a degree from Vanderbilt University.

In my past, I would have used those things in an attempt to impress people, but the truth is, none of those things qualify me. So what does? While those things are real, they only give a perception of success and may hide a reality of failures.

Real life is what qualifies me! I’ve messed up so many things. Yet those failures are only failures if I never use them to help others. If they help others, then they become successes. So, here comes a list of things that I’ve lived through.

  • Failed at reaching my highest potential in baseball – Why? What did I learn.
  • Failed multiple times at losing weight until around 12 years ago – Why? What changed?
  • Failed at a business, and left with a mountain of debt.
  • Watched people lose half of their wealth twice. (2000-2002 and 2008)
  • Saw what happened to people who were unprepared to lose their income. Felt that one personally too!
  • Witnessed what can happen to a family when one spouse dies without insurance to protect those that they loved most.
  • Lived and still living through a child’s illness that isn’t covered by insurance.
  • Failed so many times that I couldn’t sleep. If I could sleep, didn’t want to get up. And, at times just wanted the emotional pain to go away.
  • Wondered where God was, and still do at times.

So, my failures have done more to qualify me than the degree, the initials, or the licenses. Despite those failures, I’m still here. Let me help you!

Mickey Ellison

(316)209-9005

mickey@mickeyellison.com

mickey@aegisgroupprotects.com

 

Landmines (Who’s Most Important)

“Expect the best, plan for the worst, and be prepared to be surprised”   Unknown Author

What would happen to your family if you were killed in a car accident today? Would your spouse be able to pay the mortgage? Could they stay in the house or would they be forced to move?  How about your kids? Speaking of kids, if both you and your spouse were in that same car, what happens to your children? Where and who do they live with?

If you were laid off tomorrow, how long would your family be able to pay the bills? What if the car accident mentioned above didn’t kill you, rather it left you unable to work?

The financial industry spends most of its time focusing on retirement planning, yet there are landmines in each of our lives that can make retirement impossible. What are they? Have you addressed them? Can you plan for those landmines?

Retirement is only one aspect of our lives, and focusing too much on it leaves us blind to the landmines of life. Life planning addresses all aspects of life, and protects those who and what is most important to us.

For personal advice and help, contact me.

316-209-9005

Email:  mickey@aegisgroupprotects.com