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Submitted by: Leah, New Prague, MN

We give away 10% of our dollars 💵 and days 📅

When we were first challenged to give away 10% of our paycheck (hello, 2 young teachers!), we looked at our bank account, added up our monthly payments, the cost of groceries and daycare and realized we had scarcely enough to give away even the smallest amount. Still, the idea of giving big intrigued us. We decided that if we waited until the end of the month, we’d come up short, so we took our paychecks, figured out 10% and gave that much off the top to some charities we loved. Next, we paid our bills and then figured out the rest with what was left. We were astonished to find that we had more than enough. It made no logical sense. We tried again the following months and learned the mysterious boomerang effect of generosity. This caused us to get curious about other resources. We began giving away our time as well. We planned 10% of our time to be given in service. As parents to four kids, our schedules were already fit to burst, but we were too intrigued not to try. Somehow, when we gave our days away, more time opened up. It’s crazy how giving away the very thing you need opens up space for that need to be met in your own life. Today, we make a yearly plan to give away 36.5 days to local and global organizations. We’ve gotten to know the homeless and imprisoned in our community and taken faraway trips to love orphans and widows. Miraculously, our time has been multiplied back to us. It shouldn’t be surprising that pouring out what’s on top makes room for more, but we’re amazed every time. We’ve practiced generosity for over a decade and the theory has held: our sacrificial investment into the world always comes back, a full measure, pressed down, running over into our laps.

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