Friday, April 20, 2012


We have very bad credit.  Almost all of my life, that equated with the fact that we are bad people.  Bad credit equaled bad people.  Well, if not bad, at least poor managers, people who made poor decisions... on the edge of low life.  I have a very vivid memory of my childhood community.  One poor sucker filed bankruptsy.  What a bad man he was!  "Why, he was running away from responsibility and cheating almost everyone."  "Don't be like him," was the unspoken and powerful message. 

When did the whole credit reporting thing begin?  Guess I'll have to research that, but it most certainly began out of misguided trust and failed agreements.  Regulations must be put in place.  So, here we are 2012 and for most of our adult life we have had a number, a number based on our behavior.   If we paid the bills on time, didn't over extend, made "sound" financial decisions, yadda, yadda, yadda,...we got a high number by the powers that be.  Once, that was very important to me, a matter of pride.  "We have a very high credit score," was a casual conversation piece to be interjected at times where others would nod and acknowledge our wise accomplishments.  It was a shield, an armor.  High scores set one apart from the masses.  Oh, those masses.  They really should make better decisions. 

That was then.  Now?  Now doesn't think much about the masses and bad decisions.  Now knows the truth.  An artificial number, that everyone who makes decisions about your future looks at,  says nothing about who you are.  Nothing.  It doesn't know your heart or your value system.  It doesn't know your experiences or your joy.  It doesn't know your committment to responsibility and it doesn't know  your faith. 

We were one of them.  The ones who looks ascantly at the "low numbers."   Now,we are one of them, the, "low numbers."  When I taught 6th grade we studied Easter Island.  There are many theories of the social interactions of the island, but one was the theory of the long ears and the short ears.  Not to go into the history, but the two of them, looked different and had different cultural experiences  which  created annimosity among themselves.

I feel like a short ear.  A "low number."  Our society has the, "high numbers," and the "low numbers."  And, we have a system in place that sets the highs on one plateau and the lows on another. 

It's an interesting way to live, as a, "low number," especially having been one of the other for all of my life.  I hear my father's disapproval almost daily. 

But the truth is, it doesn't matter.  Sure, it makes life a little like trugging through mud, or taking the jeep through the sand trail to get to the cabin, but in the nature of who we are, being a "low number" or a "high number" is probably a lot like being a "long ear" or a "short ear."  It's just what happened to you while you were trying to experience life.  Doesn't have anything to do with pride or being a good person.  Probably wouldn't even raise the disapproval of a father. 

So, when we want to buy a house, we're  "short ears."  We just can't.  It's not there for us.  The system in place says, "You must not be our type.  We cannot trust you.  You are a threat.  You are a "short ear."  We must protect ourselves from you. 

So, we go along, being short ears, but behaving no differently than we were when our ears were long.  Having no different values, believing in committment and hand shakes and honesty.  But our ears have been lobbed so we have learned to cower and say, "some things are not available to us."

Credit scores are the human attempt to see into the heart of man.  Thank God our hearts are viewed clearly by the All Seer.  God, the All Seer, sees the high numbers and the low numbers and the long ears and the short ears.  He looks into their hearts, and he gives them the ability to laugh at the other. 

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