As a church family, we are working through author and pastor Brian Kluth’s 30-Day Generosity Devotional: 7 Keys to Open-Handed Living in a Tight-Fisted World. With the blogs I write, in these 3 weeks of blogs, I am going to take the appendix articles Pastor Kluth has written and use them. Last week was Blog #351: Practical Advice About Giving (Part 1). Today we move on to Part 2.
If you are married to a Christian, but the two of you do not agree on how much you should give to the Lord’s work. See if your spouse will read through this material and/or listen to some of the Internet messages at www.GiveWithJoy.org or www.Generosity Pledge.org. Then talk and pray together about a mutually agreeable “testing period” concerning your giving 10% or more.
If you are married and your spouse is not a Christian: Identify any money you have freedom to spend (read Luke 8:3) and set aside 10% or more of this money to give to the Lord’s work. AND/OR show this material to your spouse and see if you can try the 90-day testing period.
If you are trying to decide whether to give off the gross or the net of your income: Pray and ask God what he wants you to do. If he prompts you in your heart to give off the gross amount, go ahead and do this, trusting him with the results. If you don’t have a peace about this, begin giving 10% off the net amount for a few months and see what happens. After a few months, if you experience God’s creative care in your life, then begin to give 10% or more off your gross income.
If you’re wondering about how much to give to your church and how much to give to other places: A good practice I have used is to give 10% of my main source of income to my local church (i.e. my main income goes to support the work of my main source of Christian fellowship and teaching). I then set aside 10% or more of God’s extra provisions and financial blessings that he brings into my life so I can give to missionaries, projects, and the needy as the Lord prompts me to give.
If you have children at home: Help your children set up a place where they can set aside “God’s portion” of any money they receive (e.g. allowances, work projects, gifts of money, etc.). Have them give at church, to missions, and/or to help people in need.
If you have “fallen behind” in your giving to God’s work: If you knowingly or accidentally have fallen behind in your giving to God’s work, you will never regret the decision to “get right” in this area. Review your financial records from the past several months and pray about “making up” the amount you have fallen behind. One elderly lady in her 90’s I heard about sent a tithe cheque to the church office with the note, “I want to be prayed up, paid up, and ready to go!”‘