What is the $20 Difference?

A little bit goes a long way.  Everyone can make a difference.  You can make a difference by providing relief to someone in need, even if that relief is temporary and comes in the form of a trip, a visitor, a gift, or an act of kindness. This is a collection of experiences that will give you ideas of something you can do right now to make a difference with little or no money.  We hope it will inspire you to make all the difference for someone.

Have an example of a $20 difference? We would love to hear about it and share it here! Send your experience to info@thetwentydollardifference.com

Do you know of someone who could benefit from the $20 difference? Send us some information and we'll include the person in our selection process. Send information to info@thetwentydollardifference.com

Parade of Angels

The Scene:
Our four year old little boy was in the hospital very sick with meningitis.  A lot of people asked what they could do to help.  We honestly could not think of anything and told everyone that.  It was a hard week.  It was hard seeing our little boy in so much pain and just so sick and miserable. 

The $20 Difference?
Before we left the hospital, one family went and cleaned our house.  How nice it was to come home to a clean house.

We also had a parade of angels on our doorstep coming and going the entire week after we got home.  Some brought dinner.  Some brought toys.  Some brought treats. Some brought little crafts or activities.  Some brought stuffed animals. Some brought books.  And some brought some of each.

We had a parade of angels making deliveries to us that whole week.  What to them individually probably seemed like a simple thing, meant all the difference to me.  You see, what I needed--but didn't even know myself that I needed--was to see my little boy smile.  Each person that stopped by made him smile.  Each person that stopped by, in turn, healed a bit of my hurting heart.

Money Spent?
Less than $20 per person

The Impact?
It was clear to me that even though I don't even know what I need sometimes--my loving Heavenly Father does! He knows me personally and knows what will help me feel better even when I do not know.  It made me all the more determined to listen and to ACT on those little thoughts that come to mind to do something nice for someone however small and insignificant it may seem.

The Challenge:
Listen and act on those little thoughts that come to your mind.

The Gift Card

The Scene:
We had a four month old baby with some kidney issues.  We were not sure of the extent of the issues yet.  Our savings had been depleted by all kinds of unexpected expenses.  My husband's boss walked into his office and told him that day was his and a lot of other people's last day with the company. Wow. They had laid off a lot of their employees.  Turned out to be the best thing that ever could have happened.  But we wouldn't know that for quite some time.

Shock.  Freak out.  Pray.  We cut back on all expenses that we possibly could.  Anyone that knows us well knows that we love to go out and eat out as a family.  But as with all the other of life's little luxuries, all eating out, movies, and playing that would cost money was on hold indefinitely as we did not know how long it would be until my husband could find another job.  I remember telling my husband--I just want to get out of the house and go to Chili's.

The $20 Difference:
A friend of ours was out of town when all of the job loss stuff happened.  But she knew that we were going to have some appointments at the hospital to try to figure out what was going on with my son's kidneys.  She sent a little note that said she would have loved to bring dinner to us that day, but since she was out of town, she was sending a Chili's gift card.

A Chili's gift card for $20.

Could there have been something else that she could have done to make me feel more loved? It sounds silly.  But I felt so loved by God that day.  If she had simply sent $20--I would not have spent it at Chili's.  If she had brought dinner, I would have felt so grateful.  But, as silly as it sounds, the fact that she sent a Chili's gift card made me feel more loved then anything else she could have done.

Money spent:
 $20

The Impact:
Our family felt loved in a time when we needed to know that God was aware of our situation and cared about us individually and as a family.

The challenge:
Pray to know someone that you can help this month.  And help them.  You don't have to have a lot to make a big difference in someone's life.  Just make the $20 difference.


Flowers

The Scene:
We had just moved.  I was feeling sorry for myself.  My kids were having a hard time adapting and were acting out a bit.  I didn't feel like I knew anyone and was missing my old friends and neighborhood.

The $20 Difference
A friend from our new neighborhood stopped by with flowers.   Later that day, another girl I had recently met at church stopped by with more flowers.

The Cost?
Less than $20 per person

The Impact?
I realized that I did indeed have friends in the new neighborhood and in the new congregation at church.  I realized I would be ok...my kids would be ok...and that I have a loving Heavenly Father watching over me.  It started my way out of the funk I felt I was in.

The Challenge:
Reach out--even to those you don't know well.