What if there was a savings plan to save an extra $1300 in 52 weeks? Especially if one of your goals for the New Year includes paying off debt from Christmas.
No judgement here! We’re just stating the obvious of the good old American dream. If you don’t have it, charge it.
Now that we have your attention, what would your Christmas have looked like, if you had an extra $1300 to spend? Who would you have blessed that you weren’t able to? What would you have paid off? Or, would you have continued to save for a rainy day?
52 Week Money Challenge
We came across the 52-week money challenge a few years ago, and introduced it to our church. The challenge was simple – save weekly according to the week of the year.
For instance, there are 52 weeks in a year, so every week you would save a dollar according to the week we are in. Which means, the 1st week of the year you would save $1. The second week of the year, you would save $2; the third week of the year, you would save $3, and so on.
It may not sound like much, but if you complete the challenge, you would save $1,378 by the end of the year. Now, wouldn’t it been nice to have had an extra $1,300 this December?
Wealth Grows Over Time
Sometimes we think to do a lot we have to have a lot, but that’s worldly thinking. The Bible tells us that wealth grows over time!
“Wealth from get-rich-quick schemes quickly disappears; wealth from hard work grows over time.” ~ Proverbs 13:11 (NLT)
You see, saving little by little, will eventually help you do big things, with less stress!
When we did this as a church, a few people were hesitant about being able to stick to weekly schedule. This was because they weren’t paid weekly. To help our congregation, we made an adjustment to the 52-week money challenge chart, to help those who were paid once a month or bi-monthly.
By using this chart, it made saving manageable, especially for those who weren’t used to saving.
However, we do want to encourage you to give yourself grace along the way. Realizing that things happen, some may find it difficult to finish the challenge, or find themselves having to use funds from the challenge. If that happens, realize it’s okay.
What If I Need To Use My Savings?
There was a family participating in the challenge, and shared with us that when their car broke down, they needed to use the money they were saving from the challenge to pay for the repair. Although they were upset about pulling from the savings, we explained to them that if you weren’t doing the money challenge, they would not have had a savings to pull from.
The main idea of the 52-week money challenge is, to get you into the habit of saving.
Many of us don’t apply delayed gratification when it comes to things we want. On the other hand, we work so hard that we justify our spending with words like, “I deserve this.” The only danger in that is we end up with piles of debt or a bunch of toys with no savings.
We’ve shared in previous blogs, our daily bills, and what some pastors won’t tell you about tithing, about how our perspective changed regarding how we handle our finances. And this 52-week money challenge is one of the simplest, but most effective tools, we’ve used to jump start our savings plan after we lost all that we had.
Accepting The Challenge
We’ve provided two FREE PDF files located in the library to help jump-start your savings in the New Year. Choose from the two charts according to how you’re paid; weekly, or the bi-monthly / monthly charts.
We’ve been asked: where do you save the money? That answer all depends on you. You can save either in an existing savings account, open a new savings account, use a jar, envelope, safe or anything that will help you save.
The main point of the challenge is to get you to save. It’s not about being perfect; it’s about doing the best you can, right where you are. If it’s financially difficult to save the entire amount, then purpose to save half. If you think the challenge is too easy, double it. Again, the main idea is to save.
Remember the scripture says, “he who gathers little by little will increase their wealth,” so why not start the year off right!
~ André and Timberley Gray