In Tuesday’s post, I shared a few stories of women who are learning to live and give with purpose in an unexpected season of singleness. I’ve put together a tool to help you create a giving plan that will help you become intentional with your generosity, no matter what season you find yourself in.
WHERE DO I START?
A joyful plan of giving starts with remembering that all we have belongs to God. From the color of our eyes to our ability to learn, it all is a grace from God. Our daily acknowledgement allows us to internalize gratitude to God. Gratitude trumps greed or guilt and opens the door that we may offer it all back as a gift to Him.
“Yours, LORD, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty
and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is Yours.
Yours, LORD, is the kingdom; You are exalted as head over all.”
I Chronicles 29:11, NIV
WHAT HAS GOD ENTRUSTED TO ME?
Your giving plan takes shape with considering the question: What has God entrusted to me? In the Women Doing Well Research Study, the women who were the most joyfully generous had taken time to know what they had and used this as a benchmark for building their giving plan. Take a few minutes to review the list below. Check each asset with which you have been entrusted. Add to the list any detail as to value or quantity.
Financial Resources: Home(s), Business(es), Auto(s), Income, Investments, Collectibles (art, jewelry, antiques)
Personal Resources/Time: Work, Rest, Worship, Recreation, Exercise, Study
Intellectual Resources: Education, Knowledge, Unique experiences, Expertise, Wisdom
Social Resources/Influence: Family, Business, Colleagues, Coworkers, Club memberships, Friends, Church
What will I do with it?
There are only three possible answers to this question. I can spend, I can save, or I can share what God has entrusted to me. Arriving at the right balance takes time, reflection, prayer, and discussion. Consider the following discussion questions to help you find the right allocation.
How much did I spend last year? ________________
How do I feel about that number? Is this the right level of lifestyle for me?
Is EVERYTHING I have available for God’s use?
How much do I have in savings & investments? _________________
Is this the right level of savings for me?
Is my savings available for God’s use?
How much did I give charitably last year? ______________________
What amount would I like to give this year? ____________________
What level of giving would be sacrificial for me? ________________
SET YOUR GIVING BUDGET FOR THE YEAR
Now that you’ve set how much you will give this year, finish your giving plan by noting your passion areas and how much you’d like to allocate percentage wise to each area.
___% Youth, Family Marriage
___% Arts and Culture
___% Environment / Animals
___% Growth & Discipleship
CONGRATULATIONS, YOU’VE CREATED A PLAN TO GUIDE YOUR GIVING!