“[God] has provided in so many ways that I only see tithing as a small token of trust that He’s got my needs covered.” — Pam Hamilton
For some people, relying on God to provide for your needs is an abstract thought. But for Pam Hamilton, it was a reality that she faced soon after her husband, Scott, died in 2009. Pam was suddenly a single mother of four young boys, aged 1.5 to 10.
“I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to stay in my home, let alone pay all the bills!” said Pam. “I just didn’t know what my financial landscape would look like. Fortunately, when the dust settled I was able to stay and budget out of Social Security Survivor benefits.” One of Pam’s first acts of thankfulness was tithing on her survivor benefits.
This discipline was learned early in Pam’s life. It began as putting her family’s money in the offering plate or giving her own coins during Sunday School. She remembers hearing a sermon or a talk in college that stressed the importance of tithing. The strong teaching on the subject continued when she attended Intown Community Church — a Perimeter Church plant — when Pam moved to Atlanta. So when she got her first job, she decided to start tithing. That habit continued throughout her adult life, through her marriage to Scott, and through the birth of their four boys.
For Pam, tithing and giving to others was a non-negotiable, even after Scott's death. “I count it as a spiritual discipline that reminds me that God owns everything, and He can provide for me in unexpected ways,” said Pam.
And God did provide for Pam after Scott’s death in many ways — some financial, and some not. From meals and help with the house and yard to a vehicle and a fund that helps her maintain the house that she was providentially able to keep, she sees it all as provision from God.
In addition to her giving directly to the church, Pam loves giving to Global Outreach journeys. And she gives in non-financial ways as well. Most Perimeter members know her as a much-beloved worship leader, and over the years she has been active in discipleship groups and in Perimeter School, where her boys attend.
“I would encourage young people to start this habit early, even when they are making next to nothing,” said Pam. “You may think, ‘This isn’t a lot, and I need this money.’ But you’ll always feel like that. Being in a challenging financial situation actually is an opportunity for the Lord to show you how He can provide for your needs.”
Pam has a special place in her heart for those who are in hard places. Having been on the receiving end makes her especially attuned to others who may be struggling. Sometimes an act as simple as passing along a gift card can be a sign to someone that they are loved and their needs are seen. And it’s a way to show others what she has learned along her own broken road.
“ALL this is yours God,” said Pam. “And any deficit — I trust that You will make up for it.”