Where Logic Meets Love

Update on Tithing/Finances

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Pin It Now!
Update on Tithing/Finances | Faith Permeating Life
A while ago, I wrote about my feelings on tithing, and how I felt reassured that God would supply us with the money we need if we were faithful in giving back.

It occurred to me the other night that I have had steady freelance work since October. And it's not a case of the same few clients having a lot of work. As soon as one project ends, another one pops up. A college professor was contacted by a former high school student of his looking for an editor. Someone I did work for in New Jersey has referred me to several people, the most recent of whom e-mailed me literally the day I was finishing up a project, with a project that will last me right up until this other author is done with his second book for me to edit. Part of it, I know, is that I have great references and that, obviously, I do good work that gets recommended. But I don't like to explain away the fact of timing, that every time I wrap up one project, a new one pops up. That's a blessing.

Mike and I discussed last night a new plan for giving. We give $40 a week at church and $30 a month to our World Vision child, which leaves us with about $50 more that we'd like to donate. For Christmas, my aunt bought our family this large gift basket from the Women's Bean Project, and Mike and I took the six-bean soup package, which I made yesterday for dinner. I thought how great it would be if we could take that $50 and make it a double blessing: use it every month to buy a gift from a charitable organization and give it to a friend. Rather than having to agree on a charity every month, we're simply going to take turns. Mike already had a plan for March, so I get February.

Aside from the charity thing, I've always been really big on giving gifts. It brings me joy like nothing else to work on getting something for someone that I know they really want or would really enjoy, and giving it to them at a time they aren't expecting anything. I had forgotten this at one point in my life, maybe a year and a half ago, and I'd really hit a low point where I was just doing my job and schoolwork and everything else and found no joy in anything (it didn't help that Mike was several hundred miles away from me at the time). I was in church when I was suddenly struck with remembering how much joy I used to get from giving random gifts and doing random acts of kindness. I've tried very hard this past year to make that a part of my life. I really like this idea of making it a monthly thing and benefiting a charity at the same time.

On a somewhat-related note, I am addicted to the website Mint.com. It has made planning and sticking to a budget incredibly easy because it updates automatically and shows you how much you have left in each category, plus keeps track of money you need to save up for a regular purchase not made monthly. And it sends me an e-mail automatically if I go over budget in any category. I think it will be extremely useful once we start paying off Mike's student loans, which I was able to load into Mint, because it will (I think) tell us when we need to start paying them, keep us updated on any interest that's accruing, and obviously work our loan payments into our monthly budget as well.

Mike is getting really interested in our finances because of this class he's taking, something about managing finances for non-profits. I think it's made him more mindful of keeping our spending on track with our budget and thinking up more ways for us to save money / earn more interest on our money. I'm looking forward to when he starts bringing in his own income rather than sucking it all out for tuition payments and textbooks (he does bring in some from his work, of course -- about the same as what I make every month doing freelance work).

Speaking of freelance work, I have to get started on this new project. Remind me to talk about the power of networking sometime -- it's shocking how much work I have now can be traced back to the summer Mike and I lived with his aunt and met her next-door neighbor.

1 comment:

  1. Jessica-I just found your blog and think it's great. It's awesome that you have been able to find steady freelance work and that you have also been able to find extra income to donate to charity. Jeff and I really need to work on that.


Your thoughts matter, so join in the conversation! Disagreements are welcome, but please stay respectful and open-minded with your comments.

I reply to almost all comments, so check back here soon!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...