Most people want to be generous and help those in need. The reality is most people do not give much. Most people also understand that’s it’s important to save money. The reality is most people don’t save much money either. So what’s the problem? Part of it may be understanding the world better. Also part of it is not having a plan.
Pastor Bob Coy of Calvary Chapel in Ft Lauderdale gave this example of putting the people of the world into perspective. Let’s look at the world as made up of just 100 people:
- 70 of them don’t know Jesus. 30 do.
- 30 are white. 70 are some other color.
- 51 are women, 49 are men.
- 80 live in substandard housing, meaning they have no electricity, running water, inside plumbing or a roof over their head.
- 50 are malnourished. Their food is not satisfying, not enough and doesn’t provide proper nutrition.
- 70 can’t read.
- 1 is dying as you read this-a little kid under the age of 10. He’s dying because he can’t get enough to eat.
- 6 have a significant portion of the world’s wealth.
- 6 live in the United States.
- What if you’re the dad of the kid who’s dying of malnourishment? Wouldn’t you be asking one of the 6 wealthy to share a little for your child? Unfortunately, the answer all too often is: there’s other things to do with our money, new things to buy.
Most Americans spend their money this way:
- 24% on housing
- 19% on health care
- 22% on recreation and personal needs
- 15% for food
- 17% for transportation
- Leaving 3% for other such as giving or saving
Most people want to make a difference but are either too far in debt to be generous or have good intentions but don’t plan in advance to be generous or even to save.
Make it a goal to give 10% and save 10% and live on 80%.
So here are some tips on how you can Save more and Give more:
- Save second and Give first. When we give first, then save some we don’t spend money on those unimportant things that we don’t think about. The fancy coffee, the extra soda, the eating out.
- Use an automatic transfer at your bank. Transfer money out of your checking account into a savings account after every paycheck. You can also set up automatic giving to your church or non profit either through your bank or through the non profit organization.
- Be consistent. If you save money every other week for a year it adds up quickly, same goes for giving. If you give consistently every week and not just when you’re in church you end up being more generous.
- You might want to have multiple savings accounts you transfer money into. One should be an emergency account, with 3-6 months worth of expenses, another could be to purchase your next vehicle or other large item and another could be for a down payment on a house.
- You might even set up a saving account at a different bank to make it harder to get to and more out of mind. When you don’t see the money in your checking account or in your wallet you won’t spend it.
- When you get a raise or a bonus put that money in savings, give some away or pay off debt.
- Pray about saving and giving. Ask God to give you wisdom with your finances and guidance on how to spend what He has entrusted to you.
- When an opportunity to give comes along if you’ve been saving money you can pull from your savings and give and not have to take money out of your budget.
- Plan in advance where you want to give each year. I give to my church first. I recommend 10% of your gross income as a target. Then plan what other non-profits you have a heart for and what you would like to give to them for the year. Then plan to use money from savings or budget to give to things that come up that you would like to support like mission trips, pizza fund raisers, families in need etc.
- When you payoff debt add that extra money to your savings and give some away. Or if you are able to save some money on expenses increase you’re giving or your saving.
Being generous feels good and helps make the world a better place. Saving is a healthy practice and helps you to be more generous. Start today by choosing a couple of these tips and put them into practice.