No more compulsive spending

From the time I got my first after-school job at age sixteen, I seemed to spend every penny I earned. Despite the fact that I worked steadily for the next five and a half decades at progressively better-paying jobs, my checking account was more than occasionally overdrawn. Over the years I ignored my chronically low credit rating, repeatedly refinanced my home to pay off accumulated debt, and drained my 401(k) retirement account just to pay daily expenses. And I lived with a corroding sense of shame.

I did not want to live this way, but did not feel able to stop. Every so often through the years, I would create a budget, but my efforts to stick to it were unsuccessful. In fact, whenever I created a budget, I would become so panicky that I would go on a spending spree, once even taking out a loan specifically for that purpose, just to calm myself down! But that relief never lasted, and I continued being deep in debt.

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After being introduced to Christian Science by a coworker, I prayed about this problem from time to time, but did not really want to give up the things I thought I needed to buy. My efforts to use willpower to control this behavior continued to backfire.

As my friends began to retire one by one, I concluded that I would simply have to continue to work without ever retiring, because although I had finally managed to pay off most of my debt, I had not even begun to fund a new retirement plan. 

Then, several years after what is generally regarded as retirement age, I was laid off. A deep sense of fear and guilt engulfed me. However, I soon discovered, much to my surprise and relief, that my Social Security income plus the small pension I had earned while working, if managed wisely, could support a modest lifestyle. But if I did not seriously cut back my spending, I would eventually lose my home.

At that time I was reading from cover to cover the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science. As I read and studied this book, I realized that I was ready to ask for prayer from a Christian Science practitioner regarding this seeming inability to stop the compulsive spending. I emailed a practitioner and asked for Christian Science treatment to overcome this behavior without the use of willpower. Then I completely forgot about it. 

The next week, a friend who regularly helps me clean my house asked me where all the empty boxes were. For many years, one of her tasks had been to break down for recycling the many empty boxes that would accumulate in my garage each week as a result of compulsive online shopping. We went out to the garage to look for the usual pile of boxes, but there were none. I realized I had not shopped for an entire week and hadn’t even noticed!

The release from the bondage of compulsive spending has been lasting. This tenacious behavior completely vanished, without any attempt to use willpower or any sense of deprivation or lack. I actually enjoy living on a budget. It is liberating and removes any worry about spending. 

As I continued to study and ponder the truths in the Bible and Science and Health, I came across this statement: “Willingness to become as a little child and to leave the old for the new, renders thought receptive of the advanced idea. Gladness to leave the false landmarks and joy to see them disappear,—this disposition helps to precipitate the ultimate harmony” (pp. 323–324).

This describes exactly what I experienced. My deep relief and unsurpassed joy at this healing is as strong today as when the healing occurred about a year ago. Family and friends are amazed at this change in what had been a lifelong habit. My gratitude to God and to Christian Science is limitless, not only for this healing but for the many other blessings I’ve experienced through the study and practice of this Science, which Science and Health describes as “the laws of God and . . . His government of the universe, inclusive of man” (p. 128).

Name Withheld

Testimony of Healing
Cold symptoms quickly gone
March 14, 2022

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