Dave Ramsey Town Hall for Hope

By Stew


Last night I attended a Dave Ramsey Town Hall for Hope at my church. It was an outstanding presentation and I would like to offer a summary to those of you who missed it. Ramsey is a great speaker and this presentation was no exception. He mixed sound principles with humorous, pithy sayings to create an end result that was both calming and inspiring. The key word for the entire meeting was obviously hope and Ramsey started things off by saying that real “hope” comes from the people of our country – not necessarily Washington D.C. or our media.

Over the past twenty-five years our country has experienced unprecedented prosperity, but as a result of our financial blessings, we started to get a little fat. Things were a little too easy and many people in our nation became careless with their finances. Another result of this prosperity was that even when people made stupid decisions, things worked out because of the free flow of money and credit. As Ramsey said, “Stupid was not getting a stress test, any idiot could make it. Even a turkey can fly in a tornado. But last year the American family had a car wreck.”

Mr. Ramsey said that the panic started last fall with some of the big banks, then it spread to Wall Street, then to Washington D.C. and finally there was a media meltdown. He personally did not believe the panic was warranted at first, but after a trip to New York, where he spoke with friends of his in the media first-hand, he started to believe the panic.

He had encountered the spirit of fear.

As Ramsey reflected on this new found fear, he realized that he needed to claim the truth of II Timothy 1:7, “For God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” As a believer, he could not allow himself to be dominated by fear, but rather to embrace hope. “Fear is not a fruit of the spirit; fear is the antithesis of hope. Fear is false evidence appearing real.”

Later on during his presentation, Ramsey pointed out that our current economic conditions are nowhere close to how bad things were during the Great Depression, furthermore, we have had at least two recessions, one in 1975 following the Nixon resignation and the second in 1981 following the Carter administration that were worse than current conditions. We have been here before.

Our culture needs a resurgence of a short, simple word: NO!

Mr. Ramsey challenged all of us to embrace hope, but he pointed out that our way of life might need to change a little. The Great Depression was a terrible time in our nation’s history, yet the children of the Great Depression developed the virtues of creativity, thrift, self-reliance and self-control and put them to great use throughout their lifetimes. Those virtues are no longer a part of our society and it is possible that this present financial crisis will inspire a return to those valuable ideas and habits.

Perseverance is the #1 quality of successful people.

In further comments on our culture, Ramsey pointed out that we have developed an unhealthy insulation from failure:

There is an idea that no one should ever have pain, but the truth is we need to love people enough to allow them to fail. Failure is cleansing, it is corrective. Failure will turn you toward excellence. If there is no chance you can fail, there is no reason for you to be your best.

He quoted, John Maxwell, author of the book, Failing Forward,  “Success is merely a pile of failures, that you are standing on.”  We need to go back to personal responsibility. Work harder, think better. Ramsey himself faced a severe financial trial in his life and after going broke, he spent six months whining and feeling sorry for himself. Finally, one of his friend said, “You know whose fault it is? It’s your fault – you have to fix this mess.”

Work like it all depends on us, pray like it depends on God.

Prayer is sometimes code for “I don’t want to face reality”. There are some believers who even hide laziness behind prayer. Like Dave said, “You can pray while you’re working.” Proverbs 13:4, “The diligent prosper.”

Practical advice from Dave Ramsey as we move forward

One-hundred percent of fifteen year periods in the stock market history have made money. The stock market has come back 22% in the last seven weeks and Ramsey believes that well-run companies will be worth money in the future. He is continuing to invest in the stock market and the the real estate market.

A fifty year low in interest rates plus pent-up demand in the housing market plus huge inventory means that the real estate market is set to come back in a big way.

“I don’t do business with big banks. I support small banks and credit unions; the small banks are safer and more personal than the big banks.”

“We need to get Congress to slow down spending; they are burning money. Our money is becoming worth less, but our economy is not fragile enough for inflation to break us.”

“Gold is the snuggie of investments: it is a crummy investment.”

I came away from Mr. Ramsey’s presentation with renewed confidence and energy to find a way to make things work. There are hurting people in our country and we need to do everything we can to spread hope and help each other dig out of this mess. Ultimately, God is in control and He has promised to meet our needs – but as you put this promise to the test, do it with your boots on.

Photo Credit: radiant guy

15 Responses (including trackbacks) to “Dave Ramsey Town Hall for Hope”

  1. Baker @ ManVsDebt Says:

    Nice review Stew. We had very similar views of the event, as a whole. I loved how Dave was able to maintain his patented style, without digressing into a rant of any kind. He did an awesome job of staying focused on “hope.” Drop by and check out my review if you have time later. I’d love to chat more about what you thought!

  2. Kyle Says:

    I agree with Baker, I like the way Dave just lays it out there and doesn’t worry about politics or anything like that. I think while he didn’t really have any revelations in what he did last night he did a great job of explaining to the masses about economics and why what we are doing as a government won’t work. Stop by and check out my review when you are done reading Bakers.. :-)

  3. Miranda Says:

    Thanks for this run down. I think it’s important to try and stay as positive as possible, looking with hope (and faith) toward the future.

  4. Gina Says:

    I enjoyed Dave’s presentation too. It was my first chance to see him on stage. Good stuff.

    Can you find any info on Milton Freeman? He was the guy Dave mentioned challenged the British guy’s (Kazian {sp?}) economics theory.

    I actually used this opportunity to attend the presentation at a church closer to my home (I drive 27 miles to a church in my old n’hood). It was not a positive experience. The members were nice to each other but no one seemed to notice me; even after the preacher asked the members to raise their hands, which I thought (for sure) would have generated a simple ‘thanks for coming tonight’ comment from those seated around me. Glad my church isn’t too big to notice a visitor.

  5. Bible Money Matters Says:

    Good recap! I wish I hadn’t missed this last night – but i had softball practice. Now I have to wait to watch it when it comes online sometime.

  6. Travis @ CMM Says:

    Thanks for the recap Stew. I didn’t get to watch it last night, but was really interested in what he had to say. I love the message of hope, and I think if we follow his advice we’ll be on our way out of this mess.

  7. Stew Says:

    Gina, I would have said hi if you were at my church. :)

    Milton Friedman was the economist who has most influenced the economic views of modern conservatives and libertarians. Ronald Reagan was probably the most well-known modern politician who subscribed to Friedman’s theory of the free market. Adam Smith who wrote “Wealth of Nations” is another theorist who is ultimately the person most responsible for the American way of life.

    Dave was contrasting two major schools of thought – one that says government is in charge of wealth creation and the other theory that believes that the creativity and diligence of the individual is responsible for wealth creation.

  8. Servant Says:

    This is a great read for someone who can’t attend a DR Town Hall mtg. Thanks for sharing!

  9. Kim Says:

    I also didn’t get a chance to see this, since it was too close to the LO’s bedtime, thanks for the detailed review. If you follow this link they will be broadcasting it again this weekend!


  10. DDFD at DivorcedDadFrugalDad.com Says:

    I am glad the words, “perseverance and work” were focused on . . .

    Too much baggage is being thrown on the “Hope” bandwagon . . .

    I can hope to win the powerball and our president can hope the country and economy gets better, but hope will not make it happen– luck for me and tough spending cuts for him . . . I don’t have much hope for either.

    However, hardwork and perseverance– with those words we have a shot!

  11. Jeff @ another71.com Says:

    Good review…there’s several good reviews like this one out there. Baker (who commented previously) had a good one as well.

    Here is my review if anyone is interested…I sat there at my church trying to jot it all down.



  12. Michael @ The Life Insurance Insider Says:

    I do agree that our government needs to learn how to say “no”. They never make sacrifices anymore. Every side, every party gets what they want. More spending, more bailouts, more healthcare, less taxes, more space exploration, more military, more roads, more schools, etc. I’ll vote for anyone who’ll just say “no” at this point even if they say “no” to me.

  13. dan Says:

    “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge” Town hall for false hope was just an example of Christians with itching ears falling for and being manipulated by mainstream/wall street interests.

    The current price of gold is telling us that paper $ is failing. The stock market is manipulated by corporate/government interests, no longer a reliable indicator of economic health. We don’t manufacture anything here anymore…we are a consumer society…Keynesian followers approve, and believe that we can spend or bail out the sinking ship. But all they are doing is paying the Visa card bill with the Master card, and at the peril of human civilization as we know it.

    It’s good that Ramsey teaches how to get out of debt, but better to question the system that makes it so easy to get there in the 1st place. Ramsey is a mainstream/Fox news shill working to keep us in a false paradigm. Get out of the Ponzi market and the failing real estate market. Get real $ and food. Remember Joseph and the day that money failed. “The prudent see danger comming…”

    Sorry to go on like this but it troubles me to see Gods sheeple being lied to by wolves. False hope is worse than no hope. Our blessed hope is Jesus, and His 2nd coming.