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31 Days of Giving on a Budget: “Give, and it shall be given to you…” (Day 9)

Welcome to December’s series on 31 Days of Giving on a Budget. In this series, I’ll be sharing inspiring stories from my readers and posts with practical ways to give — even on a limited income.

If you have a Giving on a Budget story to share of a way you or your family has given to others this year or this holiday season, please email me your story (or a link to your post on your blog) and a picture to go along with it, if possible. I’d love to hear it and possibly share it during this series!

Last week, I was excited to get a great deal on an item we needed. After I bought it, God strongly prompted me to give the item to a friend who is going through a difficult financial situation.

I struggled to follow the prompting as I knew this was an item we needed and I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to find a good deal on it again for awhile. But I gave it to my friend, because I just knew in my heart that was what I was supposed to do.

There was so much joy in giving this item to my friend and I realized that I could always pay full-price if I had to because following what God called me to do was more important than saving money, anyway.

In the mean time, I knew we could live a little while without the item, so I figured I’d hold off as long as I could and see if another great deal came along.

Well, not two days later, someone emailed me out-of-the-blue and said they had a package they wanted to send to me and could I please email them my new address?

Can you guess what arrived in that package yesterday? The exact same item I’d given to my friend — only this was a bigger and better version.

Truly, you can’t out-give God!

-originally published in August 2012

Other posts in the 31 Days of Giving on a Budget series

  1. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Turn a Ladies' Night Out into an Opportunity to Give Back
  2. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Volunteering in Your Community (Day 2)
  3. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Teaching Our Children to Be Givers (Day 3)
  4. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Teaching Our Children To Be Gracious Receivers (Day 4)
  5. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Charity Begins at Home (Day 5)
  6. 31 Days of Giving: The Healing Power of Giving (Day 6)
  7. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Random Acts of Kindness (Day 7)
  8. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: 6 Creative Gift-Giving Ideas for a Limited Budget (Day 8)
  9. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: "Give, and it shall be given to you..." (Day 9)
  10. 31 Days of Giving: Hospitality on a Budget (Day 10)
  11. 31 Days of Giving: What Our Children Are Teaching Us About Being Givers (Day 11)
  12. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Blessings in a Backpack (Day 12)
  13. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: 40 Days of Fasting From Excess (Day 13)
  14. 31 Days of Giving: Giving Away as Much as We Save (Day 14)
  15. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: 7 Ways to Give Generously (Day 15)
  16. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Freezer Cooking for the Elderly (Day 16)
  17. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: The Joy of Giving Anonymously (Day 17)
  18. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: 3 Fun Ways for Children to Give (Day 18)
  19. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: The Hunger Site (Day 19)
  20. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Using Frugality to Splurge on Others (Day 20)
  21. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: 5 Inexpensive Ways to Give (Day 21)
  22. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Teaching Our Children to be Givers By Setting Examples in Our Everyday Life (Day 22)
  23. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Blessing Bags (Day 23)
  24. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Giving... Even In Helpless Situations (Day 24)
  25. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Finding Joy in Helping Others (Day 25)
  26. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: 5 Ways to Give Generously Through Couponing (Day 26)
  27. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: 3 Ways to Give Gratitude to Those in the Military (Day 27)
  28. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Teaching Children the Spirit of Giving (Day 28)
  29. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: 4 Ways to Give on a Limited Income
  30. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: Why We "Gave Christmas Away"
  31. 31 Days of Giving on a Budget: The More We Save, The More We Have to Give

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22 Comments

  • Diana says:

    So true! I’ve seen it over and over again in our lives. We have committed to giving away half of whatever financial gifts we are given. A certain man in our church always gives us $50 every first Sunday of the month. So, we keep $25 and give away $25. This last week we were pretty tight on funds due to several things needing to be replaced this week (furnace part, toilet and new tire for the car!) Anyway, I knew we kind of needed the whole $50 to get through til payday, but we have made this commitment to give away half, and God has always taken care of us. Wouldn’t you know? He gave us $100 this week! We were able to use $50 and give away $50! What a blessing. God has provided for us in so many other ways – I don’t even have time – or space to tell you it all! 🙂

    • Emily says:

      I think it’s so amazing how wonderfully intertwined everyone is. Your story reminds me of when my good friend would randomly give her big sis (sorority) little gifts throughout the week. The big sis was a financially-struggling college student. Most of the gifts were snacks, blue books for exams, etc. One day she felt like she needed to give money. She gave her $20 “anonymously” (the big sis now knows), but that was enough money to give her gas money to see her mom. She hadn’t seen her all semester, and it was really eating at her. Still warms my heart.

    • ashley says:

      I love this Diana!

  • Amanda says:

    My life is full to brimming with these kinds of moments. Things have been really tough financially and one Sunday morning a couple months ago, I noticed my son would soon need socks. (On another note what do boys do to socks?!?) This probably sounds crazy, but even purchasing socks can be difficult sometimes. I left the matter in God’s hands and off we went to church. The very first person I saw was a friend with a son my age. During our conversation she suddenly said, “This is a strange thing to ask, but could you use some brand new socks for your son? My son hates the way they feel and only used one pair. ” I feel God blesses those who insist on following His call to give, regardless of what we have. I may not have much, but I find ways to give and bless others anyway. It isn’t what you have, it’s the attitude of your heart in reponse to obedience to Him. It amazed me to witness God care about even a pack of socks. This has also challenged me to not ignore the stirring of Christ in my heart. What if my friend had been too afraid if asking about socks was strange? You just never know how God can use you.

  • Andrea says:

    I’m not Christian, but I still believe this concept and experience it on a regular basis. The more you give, the more you get.

  • Some think we are really “out there” for tithing just 10% of my husband’s income when we have a mortgage, a car loan, plus the regular bills to pay and children to raise. But the times we were not tithing, it was somehow much more difficult to pay the bills. We are now giving faithfully and knocking out debt at the same time!

    • Beth says:

      My mother thinks we are absolutely nuts for tithing. The last few years we have had unemployment, underemployment and my husband having two bouts of cancer and becoming permanantly disabled, then hurricane Sandy and losing a week’s pay. Through it all we tithe.

      Some times it is so tempting to put the money to something else. I was stressing out over how to buy groceries after losing pay due to the storm. Over the last two weeks we received $200 in grocery store gift cards and a cashier’s check for $250 all from Mr. or Ms. Anonymous! That is almost exactly the amount of pay I lost! God is so good.

  • Amy H. says:

    Beautiful!

  • Jessica says:

    Last fall after relocating to a new city and starting a new job I felt such a calling. One Sunday evening on my way to aldi I saw a mom holding a sign saying she had run out of gas. There was a car seat next to her. I felt a stiring in my heart but I also knew that money was tight. I went in, did my shopping and as soon as the total came up I knew that the remaining $9 of the $20 I paid with should go to her. I put my stuff in my car and gave her the money. A few days later I received a $10 welcome to the neighborhood gift cirtificate from a local grocery store. I knew right then it was from The Lord.

    When I went to redem it, I was once again reminded of its origins when the cashier said “huh, normally these things have a minimum purchase of $40 before you can use them.”

    God is good and it’s nice to see reminders of it like this one sometimes.

  • Susan in St. Louis says:

    I remember when you published this the first time, and I love it the second time around just as much! 🙂

  • Angie says:

    That is very beautiful story! It made my day! Thank you for sharing and God bless you always!

  • leah says:

    I’m so curious as to what the item was!! 🙂

    Beautiful story, thank you for the encouragement!!

  • Em says:

    One of the times my family was struggling financially we receioved an envelope in the mail with a $50 bill in it. No note, no return address, no idication other than the post mark was from our town. We have no idea who sent it, but it sure was a blessing to us! Thank you to the giver!!!!!!!

    • What an encouraging post. Sometimes I feel like seeking out a frugal lifestyle can make you almost greedy (for lack of a better term), because you’re always concerned with your own resources and acquiring more to help yourself and your family. A great reminder that we do not love our lives in a vaccuum – thanks for the nudge to remember to give freely!

  • M.L. says:

    We are very thankful for a man in our church who helps us pay tuition for our children to attend a Christian school. His goal is to give away 90% and live on 10% and God continues to bless him in such a way that he is almost to that point!

  • Sissy Sweet says:

    What a wonderful story, Crystal. God has a plan for us, and it is bigger than we can dream.

  • Julie says:

    My husband and I have had the same kind of experience. Only ours is not with giving money. We are vegetable farmers and always try to have plenty of produce for the markets we go to so we usually have extra at the end of the day. A few years ago I met a lady at one of our markets. Her mother works at a mental home close to where we live. She started getting the extras and even the 2nds. This year I had one of the other farmers ask me how we could give her more than what he had to bring. I told him the more we give the more we seem to have to give. We are Very blessed!

    • Crystal says:

      Beautiful story! Thank you so much for sharing!

    • Nora says:

      I love all these stories! I would love to hear more post like this! The post about single moms was very touching too as I have been a single mom since day one with my 8 year old and it’s really special when we feel remembered.

      Thanks Crystal and to your readers for sharing these.

      🙂

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