The Shepherd’s Guide Through the Valley of Debt and Financial Change: A Comprehensive Manual for Financial Management, Counseling and Spiritual Guidance

This is a guide for professionals to learn themselves and teach others.
Economic and Financial Theology throughout book
Financial Literacy, Capability, and Wellness.
Pastoral care and counseling. Crisis Management. Responses to downturns.
Financial counseling and financial planning. Generosity and stewardship.
Working with low-income/poor, and other individuals/families.
Premarital lessons and family communication. Family resource management.
Ideas for study groups, sermons, one-to-one counseling/coaching, mentoring, devotions.
Using credit, employment, budgeting, divorce decisions, addictions, funding college, retiring, saving and investing, estate planning, funerals, nursing homes, insurances.

In today’s uncertain economic environment, many consumers are facing financial challenges as they navigate the financial marketplace. While there are many useful financial education and literacy programs available, few, to date, have taken a systematic and scientifically grounded approach to literacy outcomes incorporating a spiritual perspective. Her approach to financial counseling and education is founded on applied academic research. This makes her program different from others who profess to enlighten financial behavior with spiritual insights. It is not uncommon for competing programs to be little more than new age products that rely on simple solutions and quick-fix sermons. By combining financial counseling solutions with a spiritual perspective, Dr. Williams has made financial literacy accessible to thousands of individuals and families who might otherwise not seek help for their financial troubles. Her unique perspective and approach meet the needs of Americans in financial crisis or want to be financial literate. (John Grable,Ph.D.,FSHS, Kansas State University, Founder of Financial Therapy as a new discipline)

I am pleased to write about using The Shepherd’s Guide Through the Valley of Debt in our Responding to Financial Crisis workshops. In 2009, we conducted a survey with the Extension Agents in Tennessee to determine the most pressing needs for financial information in their communities. We also surveyed the types of support needed by the faith community by interviewing faith advisors. Faith leaders told us what was new about this financial crisis—that they were being asked for more counsel and help by their own congregants. Often, the faith leaders felt awkward and unprepared to delve into the personal lives of their own congregants, but needed for financial information to assess need and decide how to help in the most appropriate ways. Faith leaders also felt the need to offer more intensive long-term support to their own congregants. We found The Shepherd’s Guide ….. to be a solid source of help for many issues and I encourage its use assist community and faith advisors in this. (Dr. Dena Wise, Professor and Extension Specialist, University of Tennessee)

The Shepherd’s Guide through the Valley of Debt and Financial Change has been an extremely helpful resource for the Ministry Excellence Project. The overall goal is to remove major economic barriers that cause stress on pastors and interfere with their ministry effectiveness and personal well-being. It enables pastors to think about how their faith values become the foundation for a family financial plan. The book enables pastors to articulate their role as financial shepherd of their congregation. Flora has drawn on her career as a financial teacher to share valuable information to anyone wanting to think about how faith and finances intersect in a concrete and specific plan. (Dr. Barry A. Belknap, The Ministry Excellence Project, Indiana)