I’d prefer to not share this publicly.
You’ll understand why in a minute.
But I find myself compelled to share it for two reasons:
- I want to brag on God and remind you that He is still doing miracles.
- I want to share the biggest practical step that helped us get there.
God’s dreams often hurt
It can be really painful when God puts a dream and a desire in your heart that appears to be impossible to reach. It can almost seem like a cruel joke.
This is how we felt in 2004 when Linda and I were dating.
We dreamed of being able to fund God’s Kingdom in a significant way.
In our minds there was this huge gaping disconnect between wanting to give stuff away like Oprah and our tiny paychecks, mountain of debt, and poor career planning we had made.
Many days that dream in my heart was overshadowed by the dead-end, low-paying job I was trapped in. And the fact that we were barely able to pay our bills, let alone give much at all.
But yet, in the midst of that, I remember telling my Pastor about a goal that I had. That I wanted to give away a million dollars.
I think he knew me well enough to know how big of a long-shot this was.
But that’s the thing about God. It seems He gets so much pleasure using those who no one would ever suspect.
All throughout the Bible we see this pattern. His strength is perfected in our weaknesses. It is better that way because He gets the glory.
With all that, we are humbled and honored to be able to say that we just recently reached that goal of giving away a million.
Like I mentioned before, this isn’t the kind of thing that I enjoy writing about. But it is critical that you understand our heart behind sharing this.
It isn’t to boast or say look at what we did. We know where our help comes from. Or even more appropriately Proverbs 21:31:
“The horse is prepared for the day of battle, but the victory belongs to the LORD.”
Yes, we are the horse in this analogy. Just sitting around eating grass in the field and then going where the rider leads us. And not buck Him off. 😉
Why I am sharing this with you
There are two important reasons I feel compelled to share this with you.
1. To celebrate and give God the glory for the miracle He has done.
I remember only putting $5 in the gas tank because that was all I had until payday. I remember fasting meals because our grocery budget was so tight. I remember imagining giving away a million dollars and it being no more impossible to my natural mind than becoming president of the U.S.A.
“Sure it’s possible, and God might do it for someone else, but not me” I thought. And yet here we are.
So, I just want to be your friend nudging you that yes, He can do far above and beyond all you can ask or even imagine (Eph 3:20).
2. To give you the most important, practical piece of advice that made it possible.
The fact is that God wants to do the supernatural in our financial lives, but are we doing the natural things to allow the supernatural to flow unhindered?
Are we doing our part, or just expecting Him to do it all?
I love this quote by J.G. Holland, “God gives every bird its food, but He does not throw it into its nest.”
And I heard Pastor Chris Durso gives some insightful commentary on an easily overlooked few words of scripture in 1 Kings 18:46 NLT:
“Then the Lord gave special strength to Elijah. He tucked his cloak into his belt and ran ahead of Ahab”s chariot all the way to the entrance of Jezreel.”
Notice how Elijah took a natural step of tying up his cloak so the supernatural God was going to do wouldn’t be hindered.
If God gave him supernatural speed, but he was tripping on his cloak the whole way there, he probably wouldn’t have outrun the chariot.
What are the natural things that you need to be doing if you want to see a miracle?
What we did right
If I look back over the last 15 years as we paid off over $200k in debt and reached this giving goal and try to identify the most critical natural step that we took to facilitate God doing the supernatural, it is this:
Having a simple money management method in place.
For some this is a spending plan, for some a budget, whatever you call it, it’s some sort of system to ensure that we were in control of our money.
- Something complicated wouldn’t work for us.
- It had to be so easy that Linda could stick with it.
- Most importantly, it had to actually hold us accountable even if we were feeling lazy.
For us the only thing that checked all the boxes was the Real Money Method.
It ensured that we told money where to go each month instead of wondering where it went.
Without it God could have given us supernatural speed like Elijah, but we would have gotten tripped up. That one simple natural step was our biggest contribution to the miracle that God has done in our lives.
Is it time for a change?
If you don’t have a working budget, spending plan, or method that is working for you (that leaves you in complete control of your money and spending), then it is time for a change.
I don’t care what approach you use, I just want to see you get results.
Our prayer is that God would do the supernatural in your financial life. That all your needs would be met (Phil 4:19) and that you would have an abundance for every good work (2 Cor 9:8).
And if we can help serve you with our course, it is 20% off (for the next couple weeks) and we’d be honored to come along side you.
Cheering you on!
P.S. I suspect I am going to get a lot of questions about what happened in the middle that greatly accelerated our speed towards this goal.
There were a few factors:
- We paid off our debt. The red line below is a rough illustration of our debt payoff over those years. And once we were 100% debt-free, we suddenly had a lot more income that we could give. The method we teach was what helped us amplify that debt payoff as well as keep us accountable to not spend all that extra cash on stupid stuff (which we both are very capable of doing).
- I got laid off and started my business. My business was going well and provided more income than my old corporate job did.
- We began giving our age as a percentage of our income. (read more about that here) We made a massive jump in our giving percentage up to 31% at the time and has been steadily increasing each year since.
- God was doing what God does. The previous 3 factors all contributed to the exponential speed towards our goal. We did our part, and God showed up and did His. Lots of miracles tied up in there that made this whole thing possible. To Him be the glory.