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A few years ago I heard the pastor of our church talk about sponsoring a child in an impoverished country for just $38 a month.

I really wanted to help. I seriously considered going for it, but my spending habits were so out of control I could never seem to find any “extra” money to give to others.

It was a wake up call. I had to stop spending money I didn’t have. Novel concept, right?

Here’s what I did and continue to do to cut back on spending in order to give to others. I hope you will join me. This is more than a few simple steps, it involves a heart change.

Use coupons. Who cares if people think you are cheap?

Buy off brands.

Recycle. Most old things can be used for something new.

Buy used cars with cash or as much cash down as possible.

Use cash envelopes.

Get rid of cable TV and use Netflix or Redbox.

Make a grocery list. It helps to know what you actually need and you will be more likely to stick to your list if you can physically cross off each item.

Pay off your credit cards.

Only buy clothes on sale or check garage sales.

Borrow maternity clothes from a friend your size , if possible. A friend did this and only had to buy a few maternity outfits.

Share a meal at restaurants or, even better, get a slow cooker and put it to use! There are so many great slow cooker recipes for almost any food or course.

Buy organic milk. It typically has a later expiration date than regular milk.

Do your eyebrows and nails at home. Pay attention to the nail technician and you will pick up the skills to do your own manis and pedis. You can print brow stencils online and I am sure Pinterest has a guide to waxing brows at home. If you must go to a professional, only go every few months and maintain your brow shape yourself via tweezing.

What do you do to save money? How has saving money enabled you to bless others?

Sorry gents, most of these were for the ladies. Feel free to weigh in with your ideas for men!

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