Okay, it is quite possible that I may have actually ended up in hell for using my credit card. You can check out yesterday’s post (directly below this one) to see where this thought started. I know this is my third article this week about credit cards so I promise to write about a different topic, like pickles or jellyfish or something cool, on Monday. But try and stick with me one last time will ya?
As you may be aware, I tithe each month at my local church and donate to a non-profit radio station I support (I know you probably didn’t think I went to church after having two posts this week refer to the woman’s breasts). I wasn’t raised to give away a percentage of my income. I didn’t start to form this habit until I graduated college. I’m just gonna be honest with you all, I give that tithe each month with a semi-clenched fist. It still hasn’t gotten “easy” to give that money away. I know in my tiny little heart that I should have no problem giving away such a small percentage of my total income, but I still find myself coming up with reasons why I need to hold off on the charity this month (need more in savings, contribute to retirement, have a car expense coming up, etc). It was because I lacked the discipline in writing a check or putting cash in the bucket as it went by, that many months, I didn’t meet my tithing goal.
This is where my credit card, and potential future in hell, come in to play. For some reason, I don’t have the psychological pain giving money on my credit card. I have set up auto-deductions each month for the radio station I support and I hardly notice the charge when it comes. That’s when I decided I would start making my monthly tithe via credit card. Good deal right?
Well, after conversations with some much wiser individuals, I realized my credit card tithing is costing the church a hell of a lot of money (no pun intended, okay maybe the pun was intended). I was talking with my girlfriend’s dad and he is an active member at his church. He told me the congregation had lost out on about $50,000 last year because of all the fees associated with the credit card tithes. That’s a crap load of money that could have been used to do a lot more effective things, but instead it’s going to those A-hole banks.
I’ve decided I need to buckle down and cut a check each month. It costs me the same amount of money, but gives the church so much more. Remember, the average fee for credit card transactions is about 2%. Two percent may not seem like a lot, when looked at under a microscope, but when that multiplies by hundreds of people over the course of the year it’s tens of thousands of dollars. This time the voice of reason yelled in my ear “Quit being such a douche bag and tithe with cash or a check.”
Don’t get me wrong, if you tithe via your credit card, I got no issues with that. I think this is something that should be dealt with on a personal basis. There are definitely advantages to using the CC, easily tracks all contributions, can schedule auto-payments, don’t have to remember to write a check or get cash out. I personally just want every dollar I give to serve a purpose, and chillin’ in some bankers pocket is not the plan I had for it.
Where do you all stand? Have you thought about this before? I got a lot of great feedback on yesterday’s post, so I’m hoping you wise individuals can throw in your 2 cents!