Hi, girls! Are you ready to talk about the second drawer in our series “She Gives, Saves, and Spends”?
In the previous installment, we talked about how important it is to understand that the feminine side of money is incredible, that our way of handling our finances is unique and that there is a purpose for every cent that comes into our hands! In addition, we introduced five monthly destinations for our income, the “five drawers”, and we talked about the first drawer and its percentage: 10% to God’s drawer.
Before moving on to the next step, I want to remind you that the order of the drawers isn’t random, and it is extremely important to portion out your monthly income. When looking at your bank account the day your salary is deposited, it is essential to keep in mind the order of the drawers so that your money is not only well spent, but also that you honor and thank God for His care.
After this brief summary, let’s talk about the gratitude drawer! We will store 5% of our monthly income here. To help you understand the importance of this drawer and the need to establish a fixed percentage for it, I need to tell you a little about my story.
I started working when I was 15 years old. It was a simple job at my uncle’s office. I worked four hours a day and earned R$300 a month.
When I received my first paycheck, I began thinking about what I should do first and remembered what my mother always taught me: “Set aside 10% for God first and He will bless the other 90%”. So I did! I set aside R$30 for God.
Then I remembered the “offerings”. I knew that my mother used to set aside an amount to help others, but I had never had to set aside some of my own money. I looked at my remaining R$270 and thought, “Maybe R$30? But that seems such a small number to show my gratitude. R$40? Well, if I’m going to give R$40, I can give R$50. It’s a much nicer number!”
Done! The portion belonging to God was taken care of, I donated R$50 to help others, and the rest I could use for myself. For a long time, I applied this rule without even thinking much about it: 10% to God and R$50 to help others. As you might imagine, I grew up, started university, got an internship, and my salary began increasing, but every month I would remember: 10% to God and R$50 to help others.
But why was it that the portion that I set aside to help others didn’t grow in proportion with my salary? I realized that if I didn’t set a percentage of my income to help others, I would always think that R$50 was enough.
The act of literally giving your money to someone else is not natural for humans. Over time, I understood that if you wait for the desire to give to come naturally, you will never help others as much as God plans for you to help them. It was then that I decided to establish this percentage of 5% to help others. This is precisely the percentage I suggest to set aside for the gratitude drawer.
The month after I understood and established this percentage, I received my salary and immediately made my calculations. I set aside 10% for God and 5% to help others. Then I looked at the 5% and, I can’t explain how, but a thought came to my mind: “This month, God knew that I would set aside this money to help someone. Perhaps, right now, someone is asking Him for help. What if God already has a destination for my 5%?”
The idea of having a purpose for our money started to form in my mind, and I understood that we are all instruments in the hands of God. God doesn’t come in person to deliver the money that someone desperately needs that month, but He can use you to be an answer to prayer if you let yourself be used. You can be sure that if God is giving you an income every month, He has a purpose for every piece of it. Through your gratitude offerings, He can put bread on the table of those in need, He can answer the pleading of desperate parents, or show someone that He has not forgotten them.
That’s what this drawer is about: about your purpose in other people’s lives; it’s about what God calls you to do for others. That is why it is so important that this drawer comes right after the tithing drawer, because, in fact, it is part of tithing.
You can pray, “Lord, my money is here at Your disposal. Show me what Your plan for it is this month.”
How beautiful it is to think that we can be a part of God’s plan in other people’s lives! Don’t you also love to know that? I hope so!
See you in the third drawer! I bet you will like it too! ????