Better Every Day: My 31 Day Challenge

So I've been at my job for 3.5 months and I'm really enjoying it. I love my work, my coworkers, and everything that I'm learning two that I can do my job well. Frankly, I love almost everything about my job except one thing: my commute.
In an effort to make the best of a tough situation, I've been listening to a lot of podcasts lately, and I've really been struck by one recurring theme that has popped up in a lot of the podcasts I listen to: never stop learning. I love learning. I often describe myself as a deep learner, or I'll say that learning is my hobby. But these podcasts push me to go a step beyond learning to start creating.
It's really easy for me to make excuses. "I don't know that much." "I don't have time to tell others what I'm learning." "No one is going to be interested in what I have to say." But ultimately, they're all just excuses.
Tomorrow is August 1st, so I thought that I would challenge myself with 31 days of sharing what I'm learning. Some days I'll give my thoughts about what I learned. Other days I'll just post the lesson itself. My goal is to share something every day for one month, and I'd love for you to join me on my journey of getting better every day.
Here's a bonus lesson from today to pregame for the 31 day Better Every Day Challenge:

Everyone knows something that you don't know. ~Bill Nye

See you tomorrow!


Planning to be Generous

Are you prepared to be generous? That sounds kinda funny, doesn’t it? Usually, I tend to think of generosity as a spontaneous thing. 

As I’ve grown older, I find that generosity is becoming more and more important to me. And it’s been interesting for me to balance because up until a few months ago, I was in debt and hadn’t ever had a full time job. Unfortunately, that also meant that I couldn’t be as generous as I wanted to be. I still gave a tithe at church, and would give a few dollars here or there, or buy a friend’s meal on occasion, but I always wished I could do more. 

A few weeks ago, I was reading my Bible, and was struck by the intentionality prescribed toward giving. 

On the first day of every week, each of you is to put something aside and store it up, as he may prosper, so that there will be no collecting when I come.

1 Corinthians 16:2 (ESV)

For a bit of background, Paul was regularly taking money from one church and bringing it to help with other churches’ needs. Typically, when Paul was getting ready to leave for a church in need, the local church would collect donations. And that was good. 

But here, Paul is exhorting them to give preemptively. Everyone knew that a need would arise somewhere, sometime. Why not plan to give? By giving a little bit over time, when the need actually arose, people would be able to give more generously and abundantly to meet the need than they would otherwise.

I also like that Paul doesn’t say how much to set aside. He just says to make sure it’s proportional to your income. It’s more important to set the giving habit in place than to hit a certain amount given. Once the habit is there, it’s easy to scale appropriately. 
When the proportions are right, giving generously should hurt a little. It shouldn’t ruin your life (probably shouldn’t be giving away all that you have), but neither should it be unfelt. I try to give a little bit more than I’m comfortable with, just enough to make me think. It means that I slow down on my savings goals a little, and I don’t get to eat out or go to the movies as often. Ultimately, it means that I don’t get to simply blow past it. 

Giving will always be a part of my life. It’s part of my value system, and it’s part of who God created me to be. Why not set up a system so that I can give generously?