More with Less: Give your money away


Give your money away

Welcome to ‘More with Less’, a series about living an abundant life with fewer possessions. This series normally runs on the first Friday of the month but life threw me a curve last week and it’s a bit late. I hope you enjoy today’s installment and I look forward to hearing your thoughts in the comment section!

The biggest asset in my family’s money management arsenal might surprise you.

It’s not being thrifty, going without or wise investments.

It’s giving money away.

Since Ryan and I got married we have tithed 10% of our income to our church or missions-focused individuals or organizations and we occasionally give to charity on top of that. I don’t share this to brag or sound ‘holier than thou’. I simply believe that giving a portion of our income keeps money in perspective and is a discipline that helps us acknowledge that life is a gift from God.

As a Christian we take seriously the commandment to tithe and it works well for us to make it 10%. I know there are various ways of looking at this but I think the important thing is to give generously of all our resources (see 2 Corinth. 9:7). We don’t tithe so God will give us more money—we don’t put him in our debt by tithing. We do it because we recognize that we live under God’s grace and and we depend on him (not ourselves) to meet our needs. By giving at least 10% of our income we express our faith in and dependence on him. And he blesses our efforts. 2 Corinthians 9:10 says:

He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness.

Did you catch that? It doesn’t say ‘increase the harvest of your income‘. It says ‘your righteousness’. Yes, sometimes the blessing does come in the form of money but it’s usually through growing righteousness as well as contentment, thankfulness and faith. I would much rather have those than a growing bank account.

If you’re not a Christian giving still provides opportunities to recognize needs outside your own and appreciate what you have. It can also keep your spending in check because you know you won’t be using a portion of your income on yourself. The discipline of generosity is beneficial whether you do it out of religious or personal conviction.

God has been extremely faithful to our family and we respond by being faithful ourselves. We reap amazing benefits because of tithing and I don’t believe we would be where we’re at as individuals or financially if we held tightly to our money. Because accumulating money isn’t our goal we focus on relationships with others and with God, which brings about the greatest blessings of all.

If you give, what benefits have you seen? What would you add?

6 thoughts on “More with Less: Give your money away

  1. I love this post! And you know, I totally believe in karma (not that I think you should give to charity to be rewarded). I work for a charity and all of our top volunteers are wonderful people who lead happy lives and you can’t put a price on that. Not to mention that my #1 foster parents (a married couple) who fostered over 100 dogs in a year (her husband even wasted his vacation time at work so he could care for them while she was away for work) ended up winning a million dollar dream home in the Princess Margaret Home lottery (again she was buying tickets to support the hospital). If you are good, your life will be good. I always teach my children about charity and they come with me to make clothing donations and food donation to the food bank. Sorry for the ramble, you got me really excited. Cheers!

  2. As I’m sure I’ve mentioned previously, I am very excited about this series! And I really appreciate that you’ve also pointed out the benefits of donating a percentage of your income even if you’re not a person who does it because of religious reasons. When Graeme was doing his GDP and well-being research, one of the things he discovered is that giving money away actually makes people more satisfied.

    Seems to me like the argument FOR giving money away is a lot better than keeping it. 🙂

  3. Pingback: More with Less: Cultivate contentment |

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  5. We have actually become more thankful as we have had to learn to live on less. It is interesting to remember as we struggle financially that many, many people in this world actually have it so much harder. We are truly blessed just to be living in this country. When I focus on how God has blessed us, I cannot help but want to give more out of thanks and praise. This is a great post! Thank you.

  6. Pingback: More with Less: The Freedom of Debt-Free |

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