Giving money away may be the most important aspect of a solid financial plan. I know that sounds crazy, but it is true. It’s hard for many people, especially who are in the middle of a financial crisis, to comprehend how they could possibly give some of their money, not to mention 10%, to their church. “How could giving some of my money away help my financial situation?” you may think. It seems backwards, but let’s explore the solid reasons why it works.
The philosophy behind why we are to give is simple. It can be found at many NFL football games. It is contained in the signs found in the stands. You know the sign that has John 3:16 in giant letters on it. John 3:16 says “For God so loved the world, that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life”. Combine that with Genesis 1:27 “So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” and you have exactly why you are called to give. If you were made in God’s image, you were made to be just like Him. He is a giver. He gave the life of His one and only Son for you. Now, that is giving. So, I am most happy when I am more like Him and I am more like Him when I give. Doing this gives me a more open spirit. Giving 10% of my money (which the opportunities to earn are given to me by the grace of God) is an outward sign of humility, trust, gratitude, generosity, and perseverance. Those are great qualities to have to be a better spouse, a better parent, a better business owner, a better employee, etc. Success seems to find people who have those qualities. So, that is why we are to give.
Hopefully you recognize that you need to give. But you still may wonder how to give. It is easiest to do it “first fruits”. In other words, take it right off the top. When you work with me for financial coaching, you will notice that the first line on any budget form I may give you is always giving. Scripture says to give 10%, a tithe. So, if you make $4,000 per month, then $400 would be the amount you give. If you put that $400 on the first line of your budget, then you know you have $3,600 to cover bills. If you begin thinking of all of your bills and then realize that you just don’t have enough to give, then you are looking at it backwards. Giving, no matter your situation, is a sign of trust that God will provide. Many people say that they trust God, but putting it into practice is a much harder step of faith.
As a final note on giving, I want to make clear that I love it. There is nothing more satisfying than giving money. It is one of the things that drives me to make money. Knowing that so much good can be done with money, it is natural to want to earn more so that you can give more. There is absolutely nothing wrong with making money if you use it for good. Now is the time to put your faith into action. “For God loves a cheerful giver”-2 Corinthians 9:7.