“In the day of their peace they esteemed lightly my counsel; but, in the day of their trouble, of necessity they feel after me.” -Doctrine & Covenants 101:8
Writing this book is both empowering and embarrassing. Empowering because we’ve discovered prophet-certified, time-tested, recession-proof financial truths that have brought us peace and security.
Embarrassing because our road to discovery was paved with bone-headed mistakes, all under the guise of financial “sophistication.”
Nor is our embarrassment without irony. Stephen spent two years in the financial services industry, between 1999 and 2001, maintaining multiple licenses and servicing a wide variety of clients.
Together, we had been immersed in the “prosperity industry,” attending financial and investment seminars frequently and reading every financial book we could find.
We once calculated that between Stephen’s financial services training and seminars and books, we had spent well over $100,000 on financial education.
To top it off, in 2008 Stephen co-authored the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and Amazon bestselling personal finance book Killing Sacred Cows: Overcoming the Financial Myths that are Destroying Your Prosperity.
At the height of the bestseller campaign, we found ourselves at rock bottom financially. A series of real estate investment blunders had plunged us deep into debt and left us on the brink of bankruptcy.
Humbled to the core, we realized that despite our comprehensive study of personal finance, and investing, we had never studied in depth what the prophets have consistently taught on the subjects since the restoration of the gospel.
Like most Saints, we knew the basics from what we had picked up over the years in conference talks and Sunday School. But we had never fully immersed ourselves in prophetic counsel regarding personal finance.
We had consumed countless hours and thousands of dollars and heeded the advice of numerous men and women in an effort to prosper. Meanwhile, pure, prophetic truths had stared us in the face every day of our lives — truths that, had we lived them, would have saved us from a lot of heartache.
We were ashamed that we had heeded the “wisdom of men” more so than prophets, and our financial failure was a direct result.
This realization propelled us into an intense study of personal finance from a revelatory perspective. We pored over scriptures, conference talks, books, pamphlets, and anything we could find from prophetic sources that would illuminate financial truths and help us discern the “philosophies of men, mingled with scripture.”
The result was the emergence of a comprehensive financial model, a big-picture overview of the purpose and appropriate use of prosperity, as well as detailed advice regarding every aspect of finances.
We were astounded by how thoroughly the subject of personal finance has been dealt with by prophets and apostles through the ages, from the Book of Mormon, to Joseph Smith and Brigham Young, to President Monson.
We were also enlightened by how integral financial obedience and health are to the gospel of Jesus Christ.
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