I knew a lady, a girl really, who was excited because she found someone to finance a car for her. It was one of those outfits that promised to finance even if your credit was bad. Her credit was bad. She had already asked me to co-sign on a car, but I would not. She told me that her last car had been repossessed because she didn’t know that if it was broken you still had to make payments. She had learned her lesson she said. Since she could not find a co-signer, she got a car for little money down and a super high-interest rate. Shortly after that, she was fired from her job. I never knew what happened to her.
“you have been trapped by what you said,
ensnared by the words of your mouth.
So do this, my son, to free yourself,
since you have fallen into your neighbor’s hands:
Go—to the point of exhaustion—
and give your neighbor no rest!”Proverbs 6:2-3
In Proverbs 6, Solomon talks about not becoming surety for another. Cosigning on a car, loan, or bail for someone is a risky thing. You are putting your good credit, word, and reputation on the line for someone who may or may not have the ability to pay the loan. The TV is full of courtroom shows that center around loans given and cosigned for. “I put up his bail money and the bail people took my car”. The person who cosigned is the one stuck even though the lack of payment is not their fault.
Tradition 7 of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) says, “Every group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.”
Dr. Bob, one of the co-founders of AA approached the Rockefeller Foundation for money to create the Big Book and help AA grow. Through circumstances and thin threads, they finally had a meeting. They were turned down for the loan of money. Dr. Bob was told that borrowing or taking the money would perhaps turn AA into an institution worried about hospitals, treatments, etc. instead of focusing on the Alcoholic that needed help. They said that AA should be self-sufficient. The best thing that ever happened. They were advised to make themselves self-sufficient and not to be beholden to anyone who could change the course of their mission.
“So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches?”Luke 16:11
Not all who co-signs are doing so for loans of money and property. Some co-sign emotionally to those who are morally bankrupt. As an alcoholic, I was that person who asked others to co-sign onto my addictions for me. I would agree to pay them back with empty promises. My soul was bankrupt and unable to keep the promises I made. This was the first time. This is the last time. I will never do it again. Gaslighting the others who had loaned me their time, money, emotions, and efforts. Until I became a good steward of my soul, until I became sober, could I ever have any hope of being trusted with true riches.