How To Be More Generous on a Small Budget

6 Ways to Give More on a Small Budget

I like giving.  But it wasn’t always my natural tendency.  Especially when money got tight.

Photo Credit: Andreas Levers (Creative Commons)

My husband is a different story.

Here is an example.

When we got married, I was a sloppy giver.  I’d leave the tithe check at home on Sundays, or forget to send money to one of our pledges.  I’d tell myself, “Oh we can just make it up next month.”

Dontae was always checking on that.  Wanting to know if we’d honored our commitments for the month.  If we’d given what we said we would give.  He helped me stay on track.

That was one way he leads our family.  By pursuing integrity and generosity.  Talk about empowering.

It boils down to this:  Giving was a priority for my husband.

 

Let me just say, that’s a very sexy attribute in a spouse.

 

So, if you’re pinching pennies, but you want to give more, these are ways Dontae and I have found to stretch our “giving dollars”.

 

6 Ways to Give More on a Small Budget

  1. Tithe or donate regularly – “Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house.” – Malachi 3:10.  A “tithe” just means a tenth.  This isn’t a salvation issue, but I believe that we are managers of God’s money.  It’s not really ours anyway.  So giving back a tenth to God is an act of worship.
  2. Honor a previous commitment –  Sometimes it’s just a matter of getting back on track.  Is there a pledge you’ve made to a charity, mission or church?  Automate it, if you can.  Review your budget.  Odds are, if you thought you could afford it when you signed up, you still can.
  3. Carry some giveaway cash – What would happen if you carried $5 – $10 in your wallet for the sole purpose of giving it away this week?  Here are some ways you could bless people:
    • Pay for someone behind you in the drive thru
    • Support the firefighter who’s carrying his boot at a traffic light
    • Buy some Girl Scout cookies
    • Slip cash in the Salvation Army bucket
    • Bless a friend who is having a rough week.
    • You fill in the blank______________________________________________
  4. Try the give, save, spend formula – The next time you come into some money, whether it’s a tax refund check, bonus or gift, be intentional about how you use it.  Designate a portion toward giving FIRST, saving SECOND and spending THIRD.
  5. Give your stuff – Can you bring 10 cans of food to the food pantry?  What about giving some old coats to a homeless shelter?  Money isn’t the only thing that helps people who are in need.
  6. Give your time –  Start asking around how you can volunteer your time.  Trust me, if you seek opportunities, they will present themselves.

Like I said, this isn’t as natural for me as it may be for you.  But Dontae and I do these six things much more than I ever did when I was single.  We don’t have a lot in our budget, but God has taught us some great things when I followed my husband’s lead and made giving a priority.

Our lives are richer.  Yours can be too.

 

Join the Discussion:  What’s one thing you would add to my list of ways to give while on a small budget?

Wife, mother of two, Christian, financial coach, writer, snowman builder, aspiring yet mediocre cook, diy project tester, goof.

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4 thoughts on “How To Be More Generous on a Small Budget

  1. Great post, Laura. I’m a big believer that giving promotes an attitude of abundance and conquers an attitude of lack. Sometimes people get so afraid of not having enough that they’re afraid to give. But giving helps break down that lie and promote an attitude of abundance. So many of people’s money struggles are psychological and have just as much to do with the attitudes that cause them to make poor financial decisions as they do with the decisions themselves.

    • Thank you, Meredith! I’m so glad it resonated with you. Yes, it truly is empowering whenever I view my situation through a giving-oriented lens.