I’ve had the privilege of getting to know the amazing Amy Sullivan through my bloggers’ group, Blogging for Good. Today she is joining us to share 3 Ways to Give on a Budget 🙂
One of my best friends lives small in order to give big. My friend tucks her family of seven into an 1100 square foot townhome. She shops at consignment stores for clothes, sports equipment, and computers. She invites friends over for root beer floats instead of dinner, and she cruises multiple grocery stores a week always in search of the best deal.
“I hope to be wealthy one day,” my friend’s husband mentions. Then, leaning in as if he has a secret, he whispers, “Giving to people who don’t expect it is such a rush.”
Agreed. Our family has been on both the giving and receiving end of outlandish generosity, but what about the times when you find yourself living small, shopping consignment, entertaining on cheap, searching out the best sales, and you just don’t have the money bless others financially?
Consider the following free ways to practice generous living:
Be generous with your gifts and talents
Look in the mirror. You posses ease in handling conflict. You thrive in the kitchen. Some stare at a pile of junk mail and see a mess; you stare at the pile and organization system forms in your head. Maybe you paint walls, or maybe you paint canvas. Others may look at a baseball team of ten-year-olds and see a headache; you look at them and see raw talent.
I’ve found the areas I enjoy are often the areas in which I excel. What did you spend your time doing when pay, recognition, and adult obligations didn’t matter? I played teacher with neighbor kids. I planned events and parties with friends. I wrote a mini-newspaper. I spent most of my free moments outdoors.
And guess what? I happen to have skills in each of the above.
Be generous with time
If your family is anything like ours, in order to be generous with time, our family had to find time. It went missing sometime around 2000 and hasn’t been seen since. Instead of becoming better at juggling activities, we have become better at saving space for others.
Making time to build community, coaching sassy high school kids, and showing up to do nothing except listen are all free ways our family has learned to love others better.
Be generous with prayer
Two-year-old Gore drowned in an irrigation ditch—but didn’t. Congenital Cystic Adenomatoid Malformation threated Gage, but he beat it. A former homeless woman is given a car, and she uses it to transport women to church. The unemployed dad of four gets the job over those more qualified. A couple who despises each other falls in love again.
Answers to prayers.
During each of these events, I know people who called out to God for mercy. People who prayed for situations most deemed hopeless. People who wouldn’t give up on a miracle and served others with prayer.
How do you practice generous living for free?
Amy L. Sullivan is the author of the picture book series Gutsy Girls: Strong Christian Women Who Impacted the World and the nonfiction, parenting book When More is Not Enough. Connect with her at AmyLSullivan.com.
How do you give on a tight budget?