A Year of Intentional Spending

Just a year ago, our lives began the shift. A year. So much can change in a short amount of time!

July 1 of last year, I decided I was fed up with being part of the money machine. Money comes to us and then leaves just as quickly without benefiting anyone. We may enjoy a moment, but that dollar could have made an impact. It could have been used for a greater purpose. So our family began a three month period where we gave up some things we normally bought so we could have extra to give. If you haven’t read the first post, you can find it here.

After a year, how are we doing? Still giving more and still thinking beyond ourselves. This time last year our youngest, Kaitlyn, was thinking about everything she wanted for her sixth birthday in August. Now she wants to give some of her birthday money away. (Don’t worry, she still wants Lego sets and a locket!) The three months of training we had were crucial to the idea sticking. As with anything, our brains had to be taught to think of others. We now give monthly automatically. We give more easily on the spur of the moment. It isn’t always easy, and I don’t think it will ever flow naturally, but that’s the point. Since we are here to make a difference, we will have to continue to rely on God for His strength and for His peace when extra bills come at us.

Of course, expenses we didn’t anticipate are popping up. (Why can’y the tree we need cut down be a money tree?) I still believe that if we keep intentionally spending and giving, God will take care of us and provide what we need. There won’t always be extra, but we aren’t guaranteed that.

Being in the US, we don’t realize how much we have. It is all too easy to compare ourselves to neighbors when we should think about those who need what we have. Giving more helps focus thoughts on that. I love the idea from Jen Hatmaker that where our money goes, our heart will follow. It is so true! When we start giving to help orphans or families, our heart begins to care more about them.

This year has seen us move. We now have a better quality of life with a flat yard on a cul-de-sac.

Our oldest, Lauren, became a Food for the Poor champion and started a project to raise $1895 for a family in Guatemala. You can see our page and make a donation here.

Lauren and I started selling makeup so we can donate half of our profits to our project. We are having fun together for a wonderful cause. This is where you can place an order.

I have spent months of consistent writing and will be self publishing a book on Intentional Spending! I still face some editing and need to work on cover art, but I am hoping to have it on Amazon by the end of summer! Since our church has had such an impact on our growth and giving, we are giving half of the book proceeds to them.

God is good and gives us everything we need. Let’s live like we believe that. Let’s be who He created us to be and give!

Linking with Holley Gerth

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4 thoughts on “A Year of Intentional Spending

  1. Hi Sarah, This was such an encouraging post. Having discipline with finances is an area I can grow in and your post was inspiring. A wonderful thought, “where our money goes, our heart will follow.” Thank you for sharing.

  2. Sarah,
    I read this the other night and have been thinking about how what you’re doing to live generously will so impact your girls as they think back on these years. I think it’s so amazing that you’re teaching them how to run a business and be givers at the same time. I think giving back to God spills over into all other areas of our lives to impact our relationships, our families and our work — you’re right –giving is so much more than our money! xo

    1. Yes, it spills over into the rest of our lives! When we train children to have the right heart, they have the basis for being amazing adults. That is a ways off still 😉

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