Friday, June 19, 2009

Giving IS Frugal

One of the things I've learned over the years, quite by accident, is the art of trading services.

Actually, "trading" is not quite the correct term! Really, it began as me trying to think of things I could do to be a blessing to the people around me.

You see, I am not a very talented person. I don't say that to be self-deprecating; I'm just bein' honest. For example, I can't offer friends in need delicious baked goods, because I can't bake! But I am pretty darn good at administrative things: schedules, organizing, and budgets (thanks to Christine at Passionate Homemaking...Becoming P31).

At some point I decided to stop feeling guilty because I wasn't signing up to bring casseroles to the new mom, and instead began to listen for people needing help with things I could do. A couple friends were talking about over-spending, so I offered to help them create a customized budget. One friend was feeling over-run in her kitchen, so I came over and helped her purge and organize. Someone's toilet was plugged, so I sent my sweet hubby over to help (he apprenticed as a plumber, and is quite gifted with the "handy" skills).

If you're reading this from "Frugal Fridays" you may be wondering how in the world this has saved me money. Here's the how... It's kind-of a "pay it forward" concept. Be a blessing, and chances are you will be blessed. It's not really a trade, because often those we help out aren't able to help us in return (which is fine, because we also usually have little to offer to those who help us).

I believe that if we are good steward of the money and gifts we have been given - and that includes giving them away without reservation or hesitation when we feel God calling us to do so - we will be blessed for it. That is, if the heart is right. We should not be motivated to give in order to get back. Our motivation needs to be both obedience to Christ and a desire to be a blessing.

To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away.
~Matthew 25:29

There are so many times I walk away from a situation, feeling as though I should do something, and yet do nothing. It's not an easy thing to be generous with my money or my abilities when finances and time are tight. But little by little, I am learning to listen to God's gentle nudgings to give. And often, at times I least expect it (but most need it), I find myself being blessed and encouraged by the love and generosity of someone else.

For more Frugal Friday tips check out Life as Mom.


  1. I love this post. Thanks for your thoughts!

  2. I appreciated your thoughts and I agree. I am trying to see ways that I can help more.


I am so glad you stopped by! My hope is that we can engage in a conversation together. I love to reply to your comments, but I need your help to make that happen.

If you have a blogger profile, would you consider editing your profile to "show my email address?" Then, when I receive your comment in my email inbox, I can reply directly to you.

Alternately, you can check the box "email follow up comments to..." so that I can reply to you right here. (You will also receive other readers' comments using this method.)

I'm excited to get to know you better!