Many people hear a phrase like "Not Equal Giving, but Equal Sacrifice" and say, "If they only knew how little money I have," or "I'm giving all I can, I can't give anymore," or "I'm single ... going to school ... there are too many bills ... I can't give much...I'm a single parent ... there's no way I can give to the campaign." However, there may be sources of funds that you have overlooked. Each one requires sacrifice, but like King David said, "I will not offer up to the Lord anything that costs me nothing!" Perhaps you can combine one or more of these creative sources to represent your commitment. Or come up with some of your own!
- Be a coupon clipper! Food is probably the largest discretionary expense each month. Taking the time and discipline to do this can save $10-$20 per week. Ten dollars a week for three years is $1,560.
- Skipping a meal a week as a family. Skipping one meal a week at an average of $20 per family to devote to prayer or fasting is $3,120 over a three-year period.
- Give up by habit. Easier said than done, but not impossible. For example, an almond latte plus tax each day for three years costs nearly $2,400!
- Commit your income tax refund check to the Lord for a three year period
- Adjust your vacations. For one or more years, do something close and inexpensive like day hikes, picnics, or take a three-day vacation instead of a week and save on the airfare and hotel costs. This can save $1,000 to $2,000.
- Make a commitment to drink only water at a restaurant. One person could save $5 a week or more. That's a minimum of $780 just for drinking water!
- Wait for the movie to come out on video instead of seeing it at the theatre. One trip to the movie theatre can cost over $20 with popcorn and candy for two people. If you cut out two movies per month that's almost $1,500 over the next three years.
- Cut down on basic cable instead of regular cable. Basic cable gets channels 1-13 and is about $12 per month compared to $25+ per month for regular cable. Eliminate premium cable channels.
- Continue a bill payment. If you will be paying off a car or school loan in the next year, commit to continue to pay the bill by redirecting the money to the stewardship campaign after the bill is paid off. A $100 payment per month over three years is $3,600.
- A dollar increase per week. This is a great idea for those who have never given or do not see a way to increase current giving. Start by giving one dollar the first week, then two, then three, etc., praying all along that the Lord would show you a way to add that next dollar and increase each week. If you were to keep this up for three years, you would give $12,000.
- Commit an estimated raise in salary for the next three years.
- Put off discretionary major purchases and redirect the money to the stewardship campaign.
A little creative thinking and lifestyle adjustments can go a long way toward providing a facility for the next generation the same way the current generation sacrificed so we could worship together today.